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144. Queering Psychedelics, Consent, and Community with Cy

Nicole: Welcome to Modern Anarchy, the podcast exploring sex, relationships, and liberation. I'm your host Nicole.

On today's episode. We have Cy Join us for a conversation about the transformative power of community. Together, we talk about exploring psychedelics for pleasure, creating more equitable access through gardening, and how our kinky buttons change. Hello, dear listener, and welcome back to Modern Anarchy.

We have another delightful, edgy, the usual radical conversation in this space that I am so excited to share with you. So, thank you for tuning in and joining me here once again.

Cy talked about needing more spaces for queer people, for integration, for connection, for healers, and I do want to name that I am a queer relationship anarchist, psychotherapist, who is working with psychedelic medicines and therapy, and I want to share the wisdom and the teachings that I have found through my training with all of you in this space, to be able to have that be accessible for all people, talking about equitable access here.

I know that there are not enough spaces where this medicine is accessible. The site that I'm training at, Sauna Healing Collective, is a non profit. They are just about to actually start a queer ketamine group as well, and so there is access to these things, and it is rising, but still, there is not enough.

And specifically when we're talking about sexuality, right, all of my research here, wow, there is so much societal pressure, internalized homophobia, internalized mononormativity, transphobia, right, all these different things that are present, and psychedelic medicines, drugs, can be really powerful to unpack those messages, to shake up that snow globe and get a different perspective on life, and Many of us explore our first steps outside of the status quo through drugs, right?

One of the more common drugs is alcohol. I think back to my Christian self years ago, who Couldn't even cognitively hold the idea that I was queer. It was so shut down a sin that I couldn't even process any of my desires as that. Any sort of thought towards that sort of potential was immediately shut down in my psyche.

And it wasn't until I was drunk, right? And we had our default mode network. turned down, those inhibitions turned off, and I explored making out with a friend out at a bar, right? And afterwards, the next day, there was No integration. I did not have a community where I could go where that was a safe space to explore what that was.

And so it just got shut down and would happen again and again when I would get drunk, right? Of course, again, at the time I had no frame for any of this because the community that I had was Christian and there was no safe space to process any of this. And so, wow, just thinking about spanning, you know, thinking about looking out to where I'm at now.

I have a community of all queer people around me, which has liberated so many conversations and exploration and ability to truly breathe into the power of my queerness in so many different ways, but it took that first drug of Alcohol, right? To open that up and from there, the power of psychedelics, you know, as someone who is a trauma survivor in, you know, sexual trauma and the larger patriarchal trauma of what it meant to go through purity culture.

Wow. Psychedelics have expanded my capacity for pleasure. Of course, it first started off with unpacking more of the tender, emotional aspects of it, but the spaces I'm able to access now are so profound. The pleasure I'm able to feel in my body is radical. And so when I'm thinking about this as a psychotherapist who's intending to specifically work with sex and relationships, and we have this beautiful tool, right, these drugs and psychedelic medicines, what does that future look like?

Right? Of course, there's the initial processing of trauma. There is the initial check ins with the body, but that full healing continuum, you've heard me talk about this, dear listener, goes all the way to pleasure and embodiment. Certain drugs in the near future are going to be a part of therapy. We're in the process of getting FDA approval for MDMA, right?

Imagine the world of working with a trauma survivor through that initial processing. All the way through to pleasure and embodiment with what is possible. I'm going to be a part of that movement, okay? But when I think about what that looks like. Truly accessing pleasure in a therapy office? Oof, you know, there are so many feelings, internalized pressure around professionalism and these relationships.

I mean, in my own journey, I don't know if I could have even accessed that sort of pleasure in a therapy office. Wow, that is a lot of pressure. Most of us don't even feel comfortable accessing that level of pleasure with a partner that we've been with. for years, okay? So I can't even comprehend what sort of trust would be needed to be able to explore that sort of experience on a psychedelic with a therapist.

You know, so then I start to think about, yes, this work is gonna happen at home, right? A lot of this healing, a lot of this pleasure embodiment is gonna happen at home, okay? That's where I found it in my own solo journeys and exploring in that sort of safe space. And so I hope that In the coming years, as I continue to build this podcast space, the space of resources that I can create episodes for you like this, that talk about some of these complexities and empower you, dear listener, to have the wisdom that I have from my training and for that to be shared with you freely in this space, so that we can all grow and that we can all heal together.

It is so truly mind boggling to me when we look out at the world. And the wars and the atrocities and the deaths that are going on in our world, that any amount of our government and our resources are spent trying to prevent people from accessing plants, the plants and the mushrooms that grow out of our earth, that any government is trying to prevent us from access to that.

I just truly can't comprehend. I mean, I understand. I hear the history. I know about the war on drugs. I know about the racial implications for all of this. I get it. But it just is truly mind boggling to me that any amount of our resources are spent on trying to prevent people from access to nature. And when we have that access, right, how does change happen?

It's in community, okay? My first experiences of queerness, I didn't have that community to process, to integrate, to feel safe and seen and validated. And it took that community for me to step into breathing into my queerness. I think if you look all the way back to my episodes from day one, my voice is tight and I'm scared to talk about sex because it was still so taboo.

All of these conversations I have had with the various guests over the years and the radical community and all of my friends and lovers that I have built around me now have allowed me to breathe into this space and really let go of that shame and that change happens in community. Remember, the mirrors.

Relationships are mirrors to your sense of self, and so if someone is beating you down, if society is beating you down, of course you're going to feel that. There is not something wrong with you for feeling that weight when you look into a mirror, right? And so I hope to create an intentional community with you each week.

I know I can't see all of your faces, but I want you to know that if you're in this space, you are vibrating with whatever I'm putting out and these people are putting out and I probably resonate with you and you could be deeply a part of my community in Chicago around here. And so I just want to say that I love you and that I hope you continue to feel into expansion, to feel into pleasure, and To really take that deep breath

and know that you are loved. And speaking of community, I want to give a big shout out to two new Patreon members that joined in the last week, Tanya and Anna Maria. Thank you for supporting the podcast. This resource, right, the podcast, it is free. You can share this with any of your friends, and I want to keep it that way.

Again, equitable access, right? Here's a free resource we can share around with our community, but the reality is this is not free. I spend so much time each week. crafting, honing, making this special gift for all of you. And so I am so deeply thankful for the Patreon members who support the podcast, either at five or 10 a month to keep this running.

Get this y'all, while I'm in grad school, I haven't been paid at all. I've been working three years of clinical work, hours and hours of clinical work, and none of it is paid. because part of the APA requirements are that you don't get paid for this training and that is a part of how the system runs, right?

So many different larger institutions run off of the free labor of clinical interns. And so just throwing that out there that I'm not paid at all during this journey in my life, you know, Patreon supporters are supporting me and the podcast. So thank you. And, uh, I recently just had a really beautiful medicine experience with my community that I am still integrating the joy from, and on the Patreon website I did include some of the integration tools that I have been using from my community.

One of those things is a scribble projective drawing that was really fun and brought out a lot of artistic creativity to my experience, as well as a somatic integration meditation on the Patreon platform as well. So if you're interested in supporting the podcast, supporting me keeping this resource free, then head on over to the Patreon link below.

I would dearly appreciate your support in this space. And otherwise, just continue to send this podcast to your friends, y'all. We are growing each week and it's so beautiful to see the numbers expand and I'm just so delighted, you know, I'm here right now, but God, where are we going to be in 10 years, dear listener?

What sort of radical intimacy and pleasure and embodiment are we going to be feeling into at that point? Ugh. It's gonna be so good and I'm so thankful to have you in this space with me and growing with me each week. So, dear listener, with that, I am sending you all my love and let's tune in to today's episode.

So then the first question I like to ask each guest is, how would you introduce yourself to the listeners?

Cy: Um, my name is Cy. I use they, them pronouns. I am the instigator of queerly psychedelic. I started this project several years ago because I didn't see a lot of representation of queer people in psychedelics and I didn't see a lot of like focus put on queer people on psychedelics and after having a lot of my own like really powerful and transformational experiences I was like let's Let's do this thing.

Like I'm not the only one having these experiences, like, you know, I like I'm a cultivator, I'm trans and queer in every sense of the word. And I just. Really love psychedelics and queer people like my goal is to help queer people love themselves like That's like my number one thing. So Beautiful, I kind of try and work with that in mind

Nicole: Beautiful.

Well, I'm excited to talk to you about all things queerness and psychedelics. I At least in my clinical work I've seen a lot of how psychedelics can be really powerful to help people to expand and open up to areas that maybe There's been a lot of shame around, particularly, I mean, I was talking about this with one of my mentors, you know, just like even thinking about how, you know, a lot of people talk about sometimes their first queer experience being under substances.

You know, you have a little bit of alcohol, it lets down that, you know, those judgments may be enough to have that first experience where you cross that threshold where you're letting go of society's, you know, holds and our internal. Homophobia and thinking about some of that same work coming out. I've seen in my clinical work with psychedelics, right?

People like having these psychedelic experiences where they're thinking more expansively about sex and relationships and gender in ways that they've never thought about in the past. So I'd be curious if any of that resonates with you and what you've seen in the community.

Cy: Yeah, um, I can speak to my own experience at least.

Um, that's where I try and come from for a lot of my. Interactions with folks, like, one of the reasons that I started Queerly Psychedelic, actually, is because I went and heard another trans person speak about their experiences with DMT and self actualization, and I just found that to be really powerful, and after hearing that and having my own experiences, I was like, really motivated to try and like, at least start like, A landing spot for other people who were maybe like lost and having these experiences.

And I grew up in the 90s raving and really like shied away from a lot of Traditional psychedelics, like I ate a lot of MDMA back in the day, but really wasn't interested in like acid or mushrooms or anything like that, because it didn't really seem to like jibe and I would always heard this like crazy dare fear mongering about how you're going to like wreck your brain, you know, like I grew up in the 80s and 90s.

Once I finally moved past those substances and started really exploring with. Some of the more traditional psychedelics, it was just like such an amazing opportunity to like meet myself and kind of break down some of the walls that I had not let really budge for a long time, like, be it from trauma or like past experiences or, you know, whatever, like, you.

Especially LSD for me has really helped me like move past some of the like shame that I was holding around my gender identity and like, you know, uncertainty and unwillingness to like really dive deep and explore that within myself. So I'm like, exceedingly grateful for LSD. Thank you, LSD. Yeah. Like, I just really recognize that this is an opportunity for a lot of people to like meet themselves differently.

And like, There wasn't and still maybe aren't tons of resources for people who are like having these Experiences like when I first had some of my early psychedelic experiences, I was kind of like traumatized by like not really being able to like bring home some of the things that I was realizing about myself and like Seeking therapy like these many years ago, the view was very different and I was getting like non positive like feedback from therapists about like, oh, you're just taking drugs like, you know, and it's like, okay, but like also I'm having these experiences and these things are coming up for me and I need to talk about them, but there wasn't like a good, it was harder back then to find like a good like support network around So, yeah.

Thanks. Using substances and also learning about yourself, especially transitioning at a quote unquote later age, which like fuck that transition at whatever age you want, like you are any age you want, but like, I just like found that lack of support really like jarring and also like. Really forced me to go out and like, find these other people who were having these experiences, at least so I could hear about them and have somebody to talk to, or at least hear from, from their experience and try and like, find peace with my own, I guess, but.

Yeah, I'm sorry, that was very meandering.

Nicole: No, that's, it's so important to talk about, right?

Cy: Yeah, I think there's just like, not enough space given for queer people to explore themselves and find out different things about themselves in this. Space. I use space like loosely because like whatever the psychedelic space is,

Totally, totally. I don't know if you've like had any experiences with like your own like sexuality or gender identity and psychedelics, but it's like .

Nicole: Sorry. Listeners can't see my face, which was like, yes,

Cy: but it can be like really? Both, like, powerful and also, like, great. What do I do with this information?

How do I integrate this? How do I bring it back to my life? How do I, like, act on it if I, if I'm feeling, like, called to act on it? Like, yeah.

Nicole: Yes. Huge, huge. Like you said, the integration. How do we take these experiences and bring them into our life moving forward? I mean, And you hit on such an important piece to a therapist when they're working from their own bias, you know, depending on their education, depending on their worldview and their positioning, and if they're still in the paradigm of dare and all these other non research backed understandings of drug use, we can say that pretty flat out these days, um, they're going to cause harm for their clients when they look at them and say, look, what, that's just a drug.

What do you, what do you mean? Or even impose any of that judgment and shame on these experiences that are really transformative for. Yeah. So many people, at least I've seen, you're speaking to, I've experienced, so we can only extrapolate out how many people in the world are having these sorts of experiences and we all need community, right?

To be able to process that, whether it's, you know, a circle of friends, a therapist, and when you don't have that space, you're just kind of locked up in your own experience up there, trying to make sense of it and being unsure of what it all means. And so. Bye. Bye. it's a really valuable conversation to have and particularly within queer spaces, right?

Because you can create, you know, psychedelic experience spaces where you process that and have that community integration. But the reality is when you're queer, you know, other people might not be as accepting of that and you have to understand that part of the world. And so it's important to create a safer space within the community where you can actually process this without Being afraid that, you know, someone across the circle is going to be judging you or making comments.

It's a, it's a really big need to have that safe space to process these things.

Cy: Yeah. And I still actually, unfortunately, I think there's like a lack of like spaces for queer people to gather and do like peer integration. There are a few like really awesome groups out there doing free or donation based work for queer people and queer BIPOC.

It's just like, it's limited though, you know, and I think like, knowing that it's out there is so limited too, you know, there's like, I can think of one, specifically one trans and non binary integration group that's run, that is free, that is like, accessible, and happens like regularly and monthly that is also like, accessible.

Stewarded by trans people, but like one, one, like how many trans people are having these experiences and like needing that support and just being like, where do I even go? Like I have people reach out to me on Instagram from like all over the world and be like, I didn't even know that there was like queer, you know, focus and psychedelics and it's increased definitely over the last few years.

Initially, it was just kind of surprising to hear people's stories and how, like, unsupported they are in these experiences. I think that's really, like, kept me going while, like, I, Queerly Psychedelic isn't, like, my full time gig. Like, I work for a living. Sure. No one's out there, like, funding Queerly Psychedelic but me, which is fine.

Like, I'm good to do that. But like, I'm good. I wish that there was like more support for the queer people that are trying to do good work for other queer people in this space. Not just myself, but like some of the other people out there. Like that's, I think like could be like the most transformational thing for queer people in the psychedelic arena.

People who are wanting to explore. And as these things become like so much more popular, I think there's just gonna be ever increasing need. For folks to find that support and I'd love to see like, you know, just do something for these people that are trying to support like marginalized groups generally.

So be that, you know, queer folks or BIPOC or, you know, choose whatever intersection you would like. Like there's just, it's lacking generally, unfortunately. Absolutely. I just, I would really love to see more support for queer people. Yeah. Like it's out there, but like. I also feel like there's a lot of, like, studying queerness versus, like, being in it, like, actually living.

I don't know. It's a weird thing to say, I guess, but, like, I see some of the out queer people who talk about, you know, psychedelics, and it's like they're, they're both, like, pigeonholed into only speaking about queerness and psychedelics, but also, like, it seems so cold sometimes. Like, you're studying, like, your own own.

People, where's the connection there? You know, I don't know. Maybe I'm maybe I'm crazy, but, um,

Nicole: Hey, I mean, I'm there with you. It's part of the professionalism culture potentially, right? Who knows? Yeah, I have to take this sort of like very distance. Like, I can't name as the professional my own identities or connection to this group or how it shows up.

We must study clinical under microscope only like this. So it could be part of the paradigm of research and stuff. That's so within a certain lens.

Cy: Detached to like be part of this group and also be like Studying your, your people.

Nicole: Yeah, yeah. And as I work on my dissertation on relationship anarchy as a relationship anarchist, it's like, it's kind of, I, I have to name the fact that it's impossible to be unattached to this, right?

And it's, if we think about things like, you know, Just quantum mechanics in terms of being able to know that when we observe the phenomenon, it results in a different outcome. I mean, you know, we just, we just got to think about these things, but that's, that's okay. We're in a different paradigm with research.

And I'm, I'm happy to have this space with you and the podcast space where we can talk about it in a more, you know, attached way. And I think that's hopefully a lot of what I hope to do in this space by bringing on people who can speak about their lived experience and their body and soul and like what it meant for them.

So I'd love to hear more if you have like a particular trip in, in mind that was really transformative that you think the listeners would benefit from hearing.

Cy: Yeah, I like when I like talk about my experiences, I like to give like the good and the bad because unfortunately like. There can be traumatic experiences with psychedelics.

Also, I really think people should shy away from, like, the rose colored glasses thing, where, like, it can all just be wonderful and great, because, like, I've had experiences where I, like, relived, like, physical trauma that I've experienced, throwing up for, like, six hours, just, like, heaving, and, like, Trying to like release these things, but like also recognizing that they're like, they're coming up that can leave you in a really vulnerable place if you don't have support after your experience.

So like, I've had a couple of trips specifically that were like very meaningful to me. One was of the throwing up for multiple hours, like reliving like trauma that I experienced at a younger age. And like, Maybe had tucked away in some way. Yeah. I'm a full believer in the fact that people can, like, recover trauma that, like, they have forgotten on purpose.

Like, their brain is like, we're gonna forget this to protect you, but, like, I've had it come back on psychedelics, and that's difficult, and that left me, like, a truly, like, broken person for a while, because I was not able to, like, Effectively find the support that I needed the therapist that I was seeing was like, well, you can't take this seriously because you were on drugs.

Like, you know, yeah. Yeah. Wow. Okay. Yeah. She's obviously not my therapist. Like I, it took me a long time to recover from that experience and like find peace and like really force me along my healing journey. On the full opposite end of that, like I've had these really beautiful experiences of self acceptance, self actualization, like really trying to like, view myself in the light of my transness and my queerness and the way that I choose to engage in like relationships with other people because I'm also would consider myself a relationship anarchist and like have been, you know, polyamorous or open for like many years.

Also having that connection with other people like I am not a stranger to like You know, psychedelics with partners, with groups, with people that I care deeply for, people that I, like, you know, just met, you know? Yeah, totally. Some of my most potent experiences have been alone and, like, intentional. But I also think that there's something really beautiful about like the community that you can find around tripping with other people and also integrating with other people.

One experience was just like, I, to juxtapose my horrible experience, I have this like one experience that I tell people about sometimes. Um, I was tripping and as someone who's lived with depression for. All of their life, truly, unfortunately, I set the intention for one experience to just like, feel happy.

Which seems like so simple and kind of like almost too simple, you know, you know, I set my intention. I set my space. I was at home. I was like by myself and that's fine. I had this, my music set and I was just chilling and I took a relatively high dose of LSD and, you know, I just was like, I want to feel happy.

And I started feeling this like wallowing of like, Emotion in like my chest and like in my mind, I, one of my, someone who was my friend at the time came to me and said, you're going to feel it. I promise you're going to feel it. And in that moment I had like this outpouring of like joy and happiness and love in a way that like, it's not always easy for me to tap into in my day to day.

But I look back at that experience and I'm like, wow, even on my hard days, it's nice to be able to look back at that and be like, even if I'm not feeling it today, I have the capacity for that. I know I'm capable of that. I know that it's still there for me. It's helped me. see my depression in different ways.

I wouldn't say that psychedelics have cured my depression, definitely not. But like, just knowing that I have the capacity for those deep emotions and that feeling on days when I might feel like a little dead inside really makes the day easier. So while that might sound like a really weird, like, and simple intention to set, I just also want to remind people that, like, carrying your depression Maybe isn't always going to be the solution.

Maybe just having different perspective. On the mental health issues that you struggle with can make it easier if that makes sense.

Nicole: Totally. I mean, psychedelics will not cure depression, right? It's a tool. It's a part of the pieces. Therapy doesn't cure depression, right? Like it's a tool. It's part of the process, you know, of what expands your perspectives.

Like you're saying to look at things in different ways to maybe, you know, move forward with new ideas and new neuronal pathways, right? Like all it's all of that. And and the work of the individual within the community. Right. And all of that sort of change. So, and to me, when you're saying it sounds so simple, I'm like, no, that's great.

Like, this is, this is totally the work. This is what you do. Right. Um, I'm always working with clients about like, yeah, forming intentions to the medicine. Cause you know, it's, it's complicated. You can't always expect where it's going to take you. Right. You can. Have that experience where it's bringing up trauma that, you know, you didn't know about.

And I've heard and seen that too. And if you don't have support there, you know, if you're doing it alone, you know, sometimes we recommend people have like the fireside. Have you heard of them? Yeah. There's like, Oh yeah. Totally. And for listeners that don't know, there's a fireside, um, group that provides access to support when on psychedelics, uh, via the phone, because texting would be hard to do well on a psychedelic.

Cy: Yeah, it's like 8 6 fireside. I'm almost positive.

Nicole: And there's a Fireside project. Totally. And there's like a, um, times to it too. It's like 11 to 11 PT or something. So people would need to check that totally. But yeah, I mean, you can't predict necessarily what's going to come up right. And that sort of way.

So you're kind of letting go, but within that to be able to set intentions of, you know, what you're wanting to, of. Focus on with that work can be so powerful. And obviously there's always a space to say, I don't want to set an intention. Aka. I want an open intention, you know, valid intention. Oh my God.

Pleasure is such a valid intent. That has been some of my most favorite experiences personally to like. Try and let go of any of the cognitive and just step into pure sensation with psychedelics. That's been huge for me Right and like you said earlier, you know it becomes a template for what's possible in terms of our emotional state and our body and our connection and Yeah, when we're trying to set intentions for it We're always trying to like help people to have like an open like teach me about You know this or show me about this given the like nature where it can be so unpredictable to have that sort of Openness to what might come up and the ways that it might take different forms and not give you that message that we're always like searching for an answer.

It can be so hard, but we have these experiences. And then, like you said, on those days where it's dark to be able to remember back to that moment, you know, that's so profound.

Cy: Yeah, I totally agree. Like, I look at psychedelics as just a way to like, meet and know yourself differently. You can get stuck in these like patterns or like ruts or like general ways of being, and like, sometimes you've got to shake the snow globe a little bit.

Let things fall a little differently and just reflect on that and try and bring it home in ways that are like important for you, which is like different for everybody. Maybe you just don't have enough pleasure and joy in your life. And you're like, fuck it. I want to eat, you know, an eighth of mushrooms and just.

Be happy for the afternoon or like look at trees in nature or like whatever like there's it's okay to just be curious and like not really tethered to like this like healing. I think a lot of people lately, especially like really want to tie psychedelics to like healing and like The problem with that is that you're asking all these individual people to do this work without creating these, like, larger changes in society, in their society, in their, like, community, in their sphere, to, like, support them to, like, hold these changes long term.

Yeah, it's great that, like, we want to bring psychedelic therapy to all these people, but, like, my question always comes back to Is it accessible for a lot of queer people? The answer is no. I'm speaking for queer community because that's who I can speak for, I guess, like, at least for myself. I could not afford to go get psychedelic therapy in Oregon, are you fucking kidding me?

Like, I work for a living. I live in Colorado. Like, 20, 000 is not, like, just sitting around for me. And when you think that it costs, like, pennies to grow mushrooms, it really, really gets me. People are pushing for medicalization. Like where is that 20, 000 going? It's not going to the facilitator because they're paying tons of fees and registrations and all this.

It's not going to the person that's growing the mushrooms, which arguably is one of the more important people in this chain. It's not going to the aftercare to like support community, to support bigger change for folks. You're like, it's like individualizing it in a lot of ways that are like. super toxic in my opinion.

Oh, yes, yes, yes. So to just be like, oh, we can like, everyone will be able to go get psychedelic therapy is like a ridiculous pipe dream. And like, who are the people that can most benefit from this? And also like, what do we need to change in our society? Instead of just being like everyone should eat mushrooms because that's not the solution.

It's not the solution. So yeah, sorry, I get really like worked up about it's important.

Nicole: It's passionate. It's good

Cy: because there's this big push for people to just like be taking psychedelics, but there's so little recognition for actually helping people make lasting change and what that requires and what that looks like.

And for a lot of people, um, Maybe you do go pick up and eat the mushrooms and you eat them and you have this really like profound experience but if you're going back to your same situation and you're not able to like bring those messages home and like Make lasting change because of the situation that you are in for whatever reason, like societally or systemically or whatever, like that's ridiculous to tell people to just eat mushrooms and the individualization of it is kind of gross to me.

So, and so there's like a push for like collective change, collective movement, collective ways in which we like, look at our whole society. Mushrooms or psychedelics or MDMA therapy or whatever is not going to be the answer. There has to be like community support and care around it. So that's the, that's the missing puzzle piece right now, in my opinion.

Yeah. And also to like people who are like, I want to have psychedelic therapy and like, it's not affordable to me. Honestly. Try and grow your own. Growing your own mushrooms is so therapeutic, like, personally, like, therapeutic. They require of you. As someone that has cultivated for a long time, I actually find, like, mushrooms, the cultivation side of it, to be the therapy for me.

The eating them, sometimes I eat mushrooms, but not very often. But I do love to grow them because that discipline Is the medicine for me, so gardening, grow your own folks.

Nicole: It's a, it's, it's not funny. It's just sad that I'm like sitting over here. I'm like, Oh, psychologist in training. Can she post a podcast where she, a guest says this, like, you know, so I'm like.

Cy: Yeah, I think you could cut it out.

Nicole: No, I'm not. Oh, I'm not cutting it out. You said it. I had a guest who said I, I was just holding space for their wisdom and I will say facts like facts are that you can buy spores. For mushrooms on Etsy, because it's not illegal to buy the spores in many states, in some states it is, but many states the spores

Cy: A couple states that it is illegal to, like, purchase spores, but like

Nicole: We're just stating, I'm just stating facts.

Cy: If you can, if you can, if you can, if it is accessible for you, I highly recommend trying to do it yourself, because There is value in learning to do it yourself.

Nicole: So you hear you heard it here folks

Yeah In terms of what you had said, I mean, yeah, it's yeah The capitalization on this is huge obviously and it's becoming it's already inaccessible to so many people right which is why I Enjoy in terms of, like, anarchy philosophies to have a conversation about it in this space, right? Like, how can we take the knowledge, the training that I'm getting and put it into a public space where we talk about these things so that the reality is even in, like, in a harm reduction philosophy that particularly within our culture and the ways that it's inaccessible for most people and just in general, the majority of drug use is going to occur outside of the therapy room, right? And so, like, what's the role as an educator to speak to that in a harm reduction framework? I think it's to talk about it, right?

And to be able to name these things. And, you know, when we're thinking about, like. Diagnoses and mental health and all these things. It's always within a context of the relationships that we're having that maybe have created these patterns and et cetera. But not just like the relationships to people, but also the relationships to our ecology, the relationships to larger structures.

And so, like you're saying, if, if we just say, oh, it's the individual, the individual does the healing, the individual does that. We're not really understanding that. Yeah. suffering is a result of the larger relationships to society and other things that are creating these dynamics for us. And so it's such a nuanced thing, but I hope that as conversations like this continue to happen and there's more space and more people are talking about it, that we will see that collective change that is probably going to occur outside of the therapy room because it's not accessible for all people.

Cy: It's unfortunate too. Yes, probably most people in this world could benefit from therapy. And like, I'm very realistic about psychedelics. And like, there's going to be people who don't want to, I don't think psychedelics are like a cure all. I think they're an opportunity for people to imagine something different.

And While, like, our society can definitely use some reimagining, in my opinion, I think it's, like, kind of naive, almost, to think that psychedelics are going to do that. The longer that I'm, like, In this space, quote unquote, the more I'm just like, there's so many other bigger things that need to change before, like, this can actually have like a huge impact watching like the capitalization of psychedelics and like how people are moving, how decrim movements and legalization movements are coming around.

It's just like, People are unfortunately seeing this as like they're shot at like living the capitalist dream, whatever that is, versus like wanting to help people. I don't know. It's, it's weird to, it's been weird to watch over the years. It's been increasingly strange over the last year and a half as like Colorado, where I live, has started putting together their framework for whatever that's going to look like, which is like very medicalized as a cultivator.

Like, you know, I grow not to sell, like I grow to gift. I grow, I give free medicine to queer people when they approach me. And like, if it's something people need and I can offer it is so little to like do that work. Like it's, it's time consuming, but at the same time, it's like mushrooms aren't like worthless, but they're also like not worth the way that they're being valued, because they're difficult to grow them. Like, it's weird to see people being like, it's going to cost you 10, 20 grand to go do this thing. And it's, it's off putting, I guess, like at the very least to see, to have seen like both sides of it, to be on like the self healing side of it, the cultivation side of it.

And then also watch. You know, medicalization, like, happening without, like, people really understanding all the ramifications of medicalization and how that's, like, making it specifically, it's not decriminalization, it's legalization, which is still criminalizing people who are doing it outside of this, like, weird legal framework that they're making up.

So, like, Am I going to be like, is somebody going to be considered like a criminal still for growing a personal amount or a giftable amount? Where is the support for the community care support? So, like, put people who don't have access to, like, therapeutic mushroom journeys. Like, how are we supporting, like, Marginalized groups to go be within their community and do these things.

How is this, like, collective movement supporting community care, really? That's like, kind of a huge sticking point for me, and I, like, do speak to that on some regularity when I speak because I don't personally, like, want to go to a therapist and do mushrooms. I don't want to sit in a doctor's office and do that.

Like, mushrooms like nature. They like being out in nature and like the clinical setting isn't right for a lot of people, I think, and for some folks, it will be the space that they want to go to. Also, there's a lot of marginalized communities that could really benefit from these things and like they're being specifically excluded by going through medical models.

Nicole: Oh, totally. There's a lot of communities that are in jail for this, right? While we're over here just talking about it. Totally. So, I mean, it's, it's absurd in so many different levels and The capitalization of healing and like the working within the systems to try, you know, like, it seems like if we follow cannabis is model right of medicalization to recreational, you know, that's kind of the progress.

And so, but then doing that and how certain people charge. Like you're saying, 20, 000, you know, where I'm working at, it's a nonprofit and we tried to offer a community care fund for people of different marginalized identities. So there's definitely people like doing the work, but it is not enough and it's, it's a huge problem.

So, I mean, you're speaking to something that is absolutely crucial to talk about. And, you know, especially if we. Think about like you said, yeah, different medicines have different settings and different people will benefit from having a therapist office where it is more controlled and calm, particularly when you're wanting to work on trauma.

Right. But that's not the right environment for everybody. Right. And I've, I've seen people where it's particularly not the right way to work with what they've got going on and it is too dysregulating and other sorts of things. And so they try it and they leave and go to other therapies. Like it's certainly not the answer.

And It's, it's definitely just, you know, it's hard when you think about psychedelics as non specific amplifiers. Like, you know, you see about people who are from particular extremist groups using psychedelics and feeling more empowered within that paradigm of their thought, right?

Cy: Yeah. It's like psychedelics aren't always going to make everybody think like, like a hippie, like not everyone's going to be like, we're all one, like for a lot of people.

Psychedelics are, like you said, a non specific amplifier for whatever they already have going on, you know, people talk about like, oh, ego death and whatever, but like, for so many people, psychedelics are this weird, like, ego feeding, like, thing that just make them more weird. Certain in their whatever belief it is, be that like a destructive belief or, uh, like societally harmful belief or like just in their own, like.

Weird power, like psychedelics aren't just always going to fix it for you. There's so many like conditions around having some sort of like ego disillusionment experience. Even if you have that, sometimes you come back even worse. I hate to say it, but like moments on psychedelics where you like feel like, God, you're like, damn, I can't fucking do anything.

Maybe you can do anything, but what are you going to take that power and use it towards? Like, towards your own gratification? Or, or like, are you going to work for other people? Like, not everybody goes the working for other people route. No, not at all. And there's plenty of people in this space that are like, very open about just like, money, power, you know, title, whatever it is.

And it's like, Those are, are we going to say those people need to do more psychedelics? No, like we're going to say like, what are you doing? Like, why is that the goal? And like, what's feeding that and how is that beneficial to the medicines or to the people taking the medicines? Like, how is like you choosing power over everything, like helping your community, your, how is that furthering?

The message that people allegedly usually got from psychedelics, which is like, we're all one, you know, I'm not discounting that. That's a very powerful experience. But what are you doing with it? You know, that's my question to folks is like, and I tell people to ask that, like, what are you doing with this message that you're getting?

And if you're a community organizer in some way, like, what do you, who are you working for? If it's just you, maybe check yourself. If you're organizing just for you, check yourself, maybe. But, that's my two cents.

Nicole: Totally, and you're gonna die and eventually there'll be people living on, like, maybe you could have a larger perspective to helping humanity, I mean, that's gonna come after you, Jesus, what a thought, I don't know, but, um, you know, but, uh, yeah, I think that's why it's important to talk about it, like, you know, in times it's like a nonspecific amplifier that can be such a tool within the right community structure and social environment where you're getting someone like you who's asking those questions, and I think it was really interesting Dean in my work with one of my supervisors, um, Dr. Geoff Bathje had done work with, um, in his clinical work with gang groups. And to hear that people would use MDMA before going on shootings, just like completely ripped out all of the ideas I had had about, like, everyone's like, MDMA is the love drug. MDMA is this, it does that, it brings all this and that. And so to hear that, you know, violence within that context was going on. It was like, Oh yeah, not always right. Set and setting setting.

Cy: Yeah. I mean, substances are not inherently good or bad. This is something that I think most people can agree on is like no substance is good or bad. They have like certain risk profiles and like what people use them for varies.

I look back to like my time growing up raving and like the 90s and 2000 early 2000s and like when I was really in that scene before I like took a little break. And I ate MDMA before we had like testing kits, before we knew what, what things were and like, for sure, I ate not MDMA a couple of times, like, you know, it used to happen back in the day, but like, now we have these tools to like, look at it and be like, okay, I'm eating like, you know, a tested substance, I'm responsibly dosing, I'm doing it at like healthier intervals, but like, back then we didn't know, But all we did was do it to like, go party, and go dance, and go, you know, get fucked up.

A lot of people did back then, and a lot of people still do, and no shade to that. Just like, know what you're taking, be aware of your settings. Because I think a lot of us like, Maybe weren't back then and weren't necessarily concerned as much as we are now back then. So I try and like bring that to people, like be safer than I was.


Nicole: Harm reduction, education, safety, right? And I mean, I hate to plug this, but I think in a reality where this is the world we live in and access to things are tricky and maybe you have a better resource, but you can buy those on Amazon.

Cy: Yes. Yeah. You can buy like testing supplies. Uh, I always. Give a high five out to dance save because they're really out there trying.

Nicole: Um, I was like, I need a better plug than Jeff. I need a better plug than Jeff. Jesus.

Cy: Go order your testing supplies on dancesave, get your fent strips. They just came out with a new final testing strip. That is. supposed to be more accurate and like they're trying they're out there trying to do the right thing so i'll give them a heads up and a high five i think there's also like bunk police also sells testing kits if you don't for some reason want to support dnc if you can go hang with bunk police too for sure

Nicole: yeah But I, I love what you said about like, you know, drugs themselves not being bad, you know, we, it's, it's more so that we can have different types of relationships to them.

Right. And I think that's a, we might be saying that in this, this space, but knowing that's not necessarily the cultural view on things, right?

Cy: Oh my gosh. No, the psychedelic exceptionalism is just like rampant right now and watching it is hard because I, I am grateful to some of the, Harm reduction people not not psychedelic harm reduction.

I'm talking like real harm reduction people out there who? Have radicalized me beyond, you know My own like maybe previous psychedelic exceptionalism, which is there's no bad drugs No drug or substance users deserve to be Hated on criminalized like these people deserve love and support just like everybody else in the world like having chaotic use of substances I've also had chaotic use with like legal substances So I also just think like people have this weird misconception that like all psychedelics are so safe But like as someone that goes to like festivals that has volunteered like harm reduction at festivals Sees people like in different states There's definitely problems with people abusing psychedelics too and like that weird misconception that like, you can't abuse psychedelics.

It's crazy to me, like just briefly like touch on ketamine, which is like, you know, people can become mentally addicted to that escapism and like, it can be harmful to your body and I'm not demonizing any substances but like, I had it. Chaotic use with ketamine for a while and like will not go back to it for my own like personal reasons because it's like doesn't serve me in a good way, but also to like I think that all psychedelics are super safe is just crazy, because there's so many people just like checking out of reality with them and like amping up their own distorted worldview through them and like, harm reduction goes beyond just being like, these are good drugs and these are bad drugs.

You can have chaotic use with pretty much any substance. Like, I have chaotic use with caffeine. Like, I drink it a lot. Most people do.

Nicole: That's one of those legal ones, woo!

Cy: Yeah, yes. So I think, like, the weird misconception that psychedelics are, like, a safer class of drugs is just, like, weird. It's weird. It doesn't, it doesn't track.

Nicole: No, I know it's yeah, it's, it's the nuance of it. All right. We can have different types of relationships to substances. And for me, it was just, you know, ringing the realities for me, since I do a lot of research in kink as well, like the realities that, like, you know, we've been fighting for so long to establish that kink is not a pathology, right?

Kink is not pathology and. And we're obviously not fully there of an acceptance space, but also once we get to the space of acceptance with drugs, kink, all the things, we have to name the reality that there's different types of relationships to these practices. It's not all good. It's not all bad. It is nuanced and we have to get into that with the relationships to these types of things.

And so it's important to have conversations about this to be able to like flesh that out when particularly the societal messaging around these things for so long has been so shame laid in that we fight so hard to get out to the other side and, and, you know, get there, but then we have to hold the nuance that it is complex across the board for people and the ways that we connect to these things.

Cy: Yeah, for sure. I mean, I can actually like. Speak to the kink.

Nicole: I'd love to. Yeah. Talk to me.

Cy: Like used kink and community around that to like reflect my own transition, my own trauma to like understand those things better. I just. Have spent years and also, this may be really taboo, but like mixing psychedelics and Kenga have done.

There's been like some really like deep and powerful healing that can happen around like both of those things. I'm so grateful that I've had like people around me to explore those things with and like. You know, I wouldn't trade those experiences for anything because, like, they've helped me be more at peace with myself, which is helping me, like, bring a better self to the world.

Harm reduction all around, like, kink has its own harm reduction and consent, and I think it's actually really valuable for people who are curious to explore those things because it really forces you to, like, think about the way that you engage in sexual activity and how little Maybe like, outright consent happens in a lot of like, cis, straight, heteronormative sexual situations.

And I would also like, extrapolate that to like, Consent around general consent, when you start exploring psychedelics and kink and pushing deeper into some of these communities, explicit consent becomes so important and you start looking for that and you're like day to day life from other people that you interact with and really does change your perspective of how you move with other people, which is something that I think a lot of folks don't ever think about. Honestly, I really think that there's a lot of people out there that don't ever think about consent, you know, coming in and friend dumping, like, some trauma thing that they're going through without, like, making sure there's space for it or like, you know, physical interaction without consent is like, you know, very common amongst I don't want to throw anybody under the bus, but like, there's just not a culture of consent a lot of the time.

Queerness, psychedelics, kink, these things all force that because you're dealing in spaces where people might have things that they're going through and require more, you know, more than what, Society deems is like, this is consent, you know, like lukewarm consent does not exist in kink spaces or should not exist in kink spaces, like enthusiastic consent all the way, a hundred, a hundred, a hundred percent, you know, and I think that that's actually something that folks who live, maybe not vanilla, but vanilla, sis, pet, it.

Heteronormative, less explored lives could really benefit from learning these things. So. Get out there and learn consent. Yeah. Which is, which is tricky because you It's

so lacking, just generally.

Nicole: Oh, yeah. Yes. I mean, yeah, and it's hard to learn that until you're in the community, right? Because you, you know, like you were saying by knee means cishet you know, relationships without like completely demonizing that world, obviously, but the reality is like what you see within particularly, you know, media, let's just name media, right? Every single dynamic I see in sexuality, it's the, the man that proceeds to come in and lead and, and actually typically push.

And the woman will be like, no, I'm not interested. But then he pursues pursues, and then they go deeper and legal. I mean, we can, the consent around that. I mean, I'm not. Fifty shades of gray. Do I even have, you know, do I even have to state it? You know, it's, it's, it's just, it's absurd watching that. I was just so overtly shocked by the, um, consent violations by that.

And to know that thousands of people have watched that and found that exciting and erotic. I'm just, I mean, it's a reflection of rape culture in our society and the way that that's been internalized and it's. Wild to me to think about the ways that like power dynamics are present always right, you know, in this podcast space I try to name that beginning like consent with you of where we go and talk because there's a power dynamic that I have Right, or if i'm talking in therapy with a person of color, right?

There's a power dynamic in her inherently with our society that needs to be named when i'm with a professor You know, they might not even realize Cause to them, they're just themselves, but the reality is they're assessing and grading and they have to be conscious of that power dynamic and how it impacts the things.

And so the reality is like power dynamics are inherent across our lives in so many different ways and we're not as conscious of how they impact other people. Like you even said, like, You know, talking when maybe your friend doesn't have that space or checking in with them. It's just, there's so many different ways that we don't check in for consent about the inherent power dynamics that exist and our relationships.

And so I think you're hitting on something that's so important, which is the consciousness to the best of our abilities. Right? And, and that's a journey. process and we're all we're all going on that at different rates, depending on the privilege of our community around us, because that's how I got here.

I'm sure you could speak to that, right? Like that, that growing process of not, not even knowing that you were making these small consent violation, small, maybe I shouldn't say that, right? consent violations that you didn't even realize, you know, were off putting and hurting other people until people gently nudged you and were like, hey, like, this isn't okay.

This is our community standards, you know, and growing.

Cy: So eternally grateful for those people that took the time to be like, whoa, whoa, whoa, like, hold on. I'm grateful to all of the Weird, queer, beautiful partners that I've had over the years who have like taught me about consent, even like learning to, to hold my own boundaries and not let people violate them as like, um, not to get too serious, but as like a sexual assault survivor and childhood abuse survivor, like, it's very difficult to.

Learn consent when your own, like, boundaries have been violated. So, like. Helping me work through some of those things in kink spaces, in psychedelic spaces, in sexual situations, and like, having to like, learn to like, create consent before going into these experiences with people that I trust, and even just finding the right people for me to trust, and like, learning to draw boundaries with others is, it's So critical and so difficult and often like in a lot of sexual interactions, especially or romantic interactions like Overlooked as like excitement in the moment and like, you just want to like, go for it, you know, and you're like, wait, like, I need to check in with myself.

I need to check in with this person that I'm engaging with. You know, I see that a lot and like my own. Maybe like history with like chaotic alcohol usage and like engaging with people and just like being like, whatever, you know, because you're like tipsy and you're just like, it's fine. But then like the, the ramifications of that, like afterwards for yourself or other people, like learning to, I think for me, it was like, wow, maybe I need to like step back from like always engaging in this.

And then like, maybe feeling not awesome about like, it's just like being like, whatever about my consent things, you know, earlier on in my like, sexual experiences versus now where I'm like, let's talk about this shit and like, Figure out like what our boundaries are ahead of time. So that if we're going into this, you know, like we know what's up, like we know where we can go, where we can't go, what's okay, what's not okay.

And like, we can have that space to pause. There's also just like, I think with substance use and, you know, sex, like there's this willingness to just like, let it go or like, at least my own willingness to just be like, whatever, you know, in the past and like, maybe let situations like occur that I wasn't like super jazzed about in the It's been very beneficial for me in engaging with, like, the kink space and, and also just, like, generally engaging with psychedelics has given me, like, an opportunity to, like, pause in a lot of ways and really assess what I was looking for more than, like, You know, like, ah, we've been on a few dates, so let's just hook up and it'll be, you know, it'll be fine.

Like, or this is our first date and let's just hook up cause it's fun. And it's exciting. And it's like, wait, maybe I don't feel great about that afterwards. Or maybe the way in which I'm engaging with people doesn't feel great afterwards. So like, I see you're making this like kind of crunched face and I'm like, hope I'm not making you cringe, but it's like, I really just like.

That consent culture really needs to permeate in more ways, I think, into our society, because people just don't realize the impact they have on others sometimes, and like, the impact that you're having on yourself if you're not like, Being honest in a sober space about where you want to go and where you want to be.

So, yeah,

Nicole: yeah, no, no cringy face to me. I mean, that hits on so many of the reasons why I, I know you'd asked me earlier to why I started the podcast. There's definitely that lineage with my family and stuff, but also, you know, I, you know, a survivor as well. I volunteered as a sexual assault counselor.

That's what propelled me into the field of psychology. I got to the field of psychology. There was no education on how to support people with this at all. What I got was very minimum of like initial trauma assessment, if that really. So it was really a passion for me to step into the space of like, what does it look like to actually heal to a space of.

Pleasure again, right? And so you're speaking on that of the ways that like kink and psychedelics have been so powerful, which my face is nodding because I'm like, yeah, me too. So it's, it's validating when I hear other people that have had experiences like that. And I think it's such an important. story to get out there because we know we're not the only ones, right?

But because of the shame, the judgment, the lack of safety, depending on different intersecting identities around drug use, like it's such a story that I don't think has enough airspace as particularly around kink and psychedelics, right? These different areas of our life. And so I think it's just so important to hit on.

And it was making me think about one of my partners who in the kink community, like. After a couple of days wouldn't even kiss me because we were, you know, they like named the fact that like, oh, your endorphins are flooding right now. You're not even in a quote unquote sober state because those endorphins are flooding and so we're gonna wait and and that tease I hated it.

But it was so hot at the same time, you know, and so like just thinking about the different ways that our brains are under, you know, different chemicals, right? Whether it be the the new relationship energy and the endorphins that go with that or Are these substances and being able to take that time and reflect, you know, I'm, I'm so glad and thank you for sharing that, you know, vulnerably in the podcast space with us about how, you know, kink and psychedelics have really allowed you to connect to your, your body potentially is what I'm hearing and hearing your yes and your no very clearly.

Cy: Yeah, I think as like, um, an assault survivor and abuse survivor, like there's the struggle to like, you know, reclaim some of like your autonomy, at least for me. And I enjoyed kink before my, uh, my assault and to come back to that with other people in other ways, and like, then also hit walls with it and be like, I can't.

Move this part, you know, like that that really bad Like experience that I mentioned earlier. It was actually the result of like having mixing my desire to explore kink and psychedelics together and like Going there with a partner that I was with and hitting this block over and over again, where I was just like shutting down in the middle of our experiences.

And that was like, causing tension. So I actually went into that experience with the intention of like. What is stopping this for me? Like what's blocking me? What's like explore in this space alone? Like what is coming up for me that I'm not able to process because I'm with another person and there's a desire to be doing this thing.

And some of the things that came up for me were things that I like needed to remember or needed to work through that were like causing. Me to, like, not be able to move really forward past this, like, one space with that partner, but, like, while that experience was very difficult, and I, I found it, like, the singular individual experience that I had was traumatizing, it was necessary for me to, like, have that come up to move past it, you know, and, like, there was no moving past it in the, Space that I was in with that partner at the time, like they just couldn't support me in that moment and didn't really know what to do for me.

And I needed to sit down and be like, okay, what's actually coming up. And like, what do I need to understand about myself in this space? So that I can again, like find pleasure from these things and like, to be fair, as I've gone through like years of psychedelic use and, you know, kink play and like whatever, as I've started transitioning, like the things that I like, the things that I want, like the things that I find sexy have changed and like being open to that and not like pigeonholing yourself into like, these are the kinky things that I like.

And it's only XYZ and being open to like trying new things, meeting other different people who are into things that I'm like, I don't know if I'm into that, but then like, you're like, ah, fuck, I'm into that. Like, I guess that's a new, like a new thing that I'm going to have to like play with for a while or whatever, explore.

But like, I've also let go of some of the things that I was like super into. Which is. Normal, and I think also people need to give themselves the flexibility to like If you're enjoying kink and part of it for you is like working through things like recognizing that maybe those things won't always remain the same because like your kink can change based on like what parts of you maybe you've already worked on and like maybe that thing just doesn't get you there anymore because it's like You've taken the piss out of it, you know, by actually like coming to terms with whatever was coming up for you in that space that was making you feel good or whatever.

You know, the buttons change also as I think you get older. So, I'm grateful to my kink partners and to psychedelics. For, like, allowing me some space to change and be a different kinky version of myself as I've gotten older and transitioned, so, bless.

Nicole: Yeah, altered states of consciousness and the beauty and the transformation of community, right?

And in both settings, whether it's with the medicine, larger community, the play, all of that. It's beautiful to know that, like, we're in this ever evolving process of knowing ourselves, right? But the fantasies, the buttons, the things, those change over time. And that can be scary because then maybe that one thing that you were so certain you would never touch suddenly starts calling to you in a way.

And you're like, I got to walk that back. I got to walk that back. But like how beautiful that like, we can look ahead to the, whatever amount of years that we're lucky to live, you know, in this lifetime and know that I'll. still be finding boxes that teach me things about myself that I never thought I would know, you know, I'm, I'm grateful.

And I know you named to at the beginning that like, Oh, this might be a, uh, you know, taboo or whatever word we want to use. topic to talk about, you know, kink and, and drugs and psychedelics. And, and it is for many good reasons, right. Within, in terms of safety and all of that. But the reality is like, what's also happening.

And I really appreciate it. I talked to, um, somatic sex educator, Britta Love, and we have this like deeper conversation that I think has really stuck with me in terms of, you know, like assessing what are your relationships to these practices, right? What is your relationship to the substance? Is this your first time?

Do you use this substance every day? Do you feel very comfortable walking in that land? Who are the people you're playing with first time versus years, right? What's the play that you're doing? Is this, you know, is this kidnapping? Are we spanking? Like, where are we at in that terms of edge play, right? That makes, like, we say kink, right?

And you and I might know the expansiveness of that, but someone else might. you like completely projecting, you know, breath play or other sorts of things, whatever. And it's like, there's just so much nuance to all of this. And that's why I really appreciated Britta's perspective to it of, you know, like, what's your relationship to the type of play, to the people, to the drugs and trying to get to a more like nuanced space of, of hopefully consent and best practices and harm reduction and all of that.

Cause the reality is it's. It's, it's happening.

Cy: Yeah. And there's also a different like risk profile with all different kinds of kink that you can engage. Like kink is such a, like too general of a term, you know, there's, there's some things that's like, maybe that's not the thing to engage in while you're both in an altered state.

Or maybe one of you is like, Less inebriated and like has a little bit more grounding or like, you know, like impact play can, can turn into a lot and maybe you're not realizing the sensations or like, I think like, especially my experiences with LSD and sex, like impact play has like, you have to have a lot of trust and like consent boundaries, like drawn before you get into that place because.

It's easy to drop into a space where you're just like, I could just like deal with that. I could take it all. Like you process these things that you process pain differently. You process like, you know, sensation differently on psychedelics and like, and any substance, let's be honest. Like you process things differently on substances.

So to like have. Clear boundaries, I think goes back to, like, necessary, always understanding, like, what consent really looks like and, like, how to literally you can write down what's okay and what's not okay if you're going into an experience with someone and, like, I don't suggest to anybody that they go and, like.

Have freaky sex and do psychedelics with someone they've never met like that's a terrible idea. That's a terrible idea you know exploring with like trusted partners at the beginning and like learning to draw healthy healthy boundaries on like doses that are like keeping you fairly grounded. Maybe you're just microdosing and messing around and like, you know, it's easy to not go too far with something like that versus like, I'm going to take 500 ug and like 500 micrograms and like Have a really wild night, very different, very different.

Nicole: That's again, the nuance of all of this, right? The nuance is so deep, which I appreciate you speaking to. And the reality is we need more. I like harm reduction, but harm reduction and pleasure enhancement, right? We need more conversations about how we have. Both so that we can be safe and that so that we can have pleasure.

And so I really appreciate you speaking to your lived experience that we know many people are playing with and exploring to, and, and so trying to get into the safest containers we can with these different relationships to these different practices and different things, I think is such a important conversation to have with the world.

Cy: Yeah, totally agree. Please start low and slow and don't decide to do psychedelics and kink all for the first time at the same time. It's terrible. It's not going to go well no matter what. Totally, totally, totally. Uh, yeah.

Nicole: I've been liking this question. I've been asking a lot of my guests too towards the end and um, I'd like to pose it here for you.

Which is um, if you could go back to that younger self. that maybe had never heard of kink, never touched psychedelics. I'm curious if there's anything that you would want to say to them.

Cy: It's better to know. A lot of my youthful fear around psychedelics was very influenced by like, you know, dare and like, but you're gonna go crazy.

And as a young person that like dealt with Depression from a young age. I was always like, what if it fucks me up worse? What if it fucks me up worse? Well, like did for a little while, like dealing with some of my trauma that came up, did fuck me up worse for a while, but like, I'm a better person for it now.

I would have told younger me, like, don't be scared and don't be ashamed. No matter whether it's like fear of like the unknown or fear of like. Stirring the pot in the wrong way, like, or fear of just like being seen and like having my, my body seen, because I've always dealt with a lot of disconnection from my body because of some of the trauma that I've endured in my life, and I truly don't believe that I would be.

Where I'm at today in my life, the, like, better adjusted, I won't say well adjusted, better adjusted, um, happy er, healthy er individual without the experiences that I've had. And like, for good, for bad, for better or worse. It has shaped me, and I would tell younger me not to be scared and not to be ashamed.

Mm hmm. It'll be okay. Mm hmm. Yeah. Such powerful words. Which is, I know, like, something that, like, older queer people say to younger queer people, like, it'll be okay, and, like, in the current, like, societal climate, maybe it doesn't feel like it'll be okay, but Being the real you is better than not.

Nicole: Mm. And people are drawn to that.

People feel that. And it's, it's different. Uh, as you were speaking to, it was reminding me of some of the metaphors that we, we use about psychedelics. So I don't know if this will resonate for you, but sometimes we talk about those experiences where they're coming up, you know, almost as. You know, a splinter.

If you have a, you know, piece in the, in your finger per se, the body naturally wants to push it out. Right. And, and it gets festered and starts to puss up. And because of the need to survive in our conditions, you know, many of us have to push that down and we keep pushing it down. Like, I don't want it to come out.

Cause when you start to actually kind of pull it, it, it hurts like, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. Yeah. Keep that there. Keep that there. Pack that down, pack that down. But then we, yeah. We go around life like using our finger and it's tapping this pain point that we, you know, haven't processed, but the actual process of pulling that splinter out can hurt, right?

And you have these psychedelic experiences where it brings up really difficult things and it hurts, right? But we're getting that, that splinter out and being able to have that process. And our body is trying to do that. And so that inner healing wisdom to bring those things up when they need to be can be so powerful.

Cy: Yeah, I'm grateful for some of the difficult experiences I've had. Like, it's hard to be grateful in the moment when you feel like your world has been shattered, but at the same time, like, I would not have decided to start working on Queerly Psychedelic if it wasn't for those painful moments. I, like, would not feel called to, like, help support queer people in any In the ways that I've tried to now, if it wasn't for psychedelics, if it wasn't for those difficult experiences.

So like, I'm grateful, even though some of it maybe didn't need it.

Nicole: Yes, I hear that. I hear that. I'm grateful.

Well, it's been such a pleasure to have you on the show and to hear about your experiences and to share that with the community. Towards the end of every podcast, I always check in with the guests to make sure there wasn't anything they wanted to say to the listeners directly. Otherwise, I can guide us towards a closing question, and then I'll provide space for you to plug away at the end as well for everything that you do.

Cy: Yeah, I think I'm good. I really appreciate you inviting me on and the opportunity to just You know, kind of talk about my experience with queerness and psychedelics and also kink. I wasn't necessarily expecting to throw that in there, but like, it is important to me too.

Nicole: Altered states of consciousness.

Cy: Yeah. Yeah. So thank you.

Nicole: Of course. It's been a blast. Well, then the one question I ask every guest on the show is what is one thing that you wish other people knew was more normal?

Cy: Not knowing who you are until you're older. As someone who didn't start transitioning until their mid 30s and is in their 40s now, and is really just getting full swing, like, especially to young trans people, like, your life does not end at 22 if you haven't started transitioning or you haven't fully figured it out, and like, You don't always have to figure it out when you're young.

It can take time and that's okay. And there's something really beautiful about that. I'm grateful to be where I'm at now. And I'm okay that it took me this long to get here, like happened in the time that it was going to happen in.

Nicole: Yeah, well, holding space for that process and all of that journey that it is in the, I assume the continued journey that it will be with every day.

Cy: Yeah. Yeah. I'm not there. Yeah.

Nicole: And the expansiveness of that. Right. And the, the play that is possible. Um, I don't know if you know, Ray McDaniel. They wrote the book, um, gender magic, and it was beautiful to have them on the podcast. They were talking about a lot of the work that they do with clients on gender and, and helping people to see it in this expansive play way, instead of the, I'm trying to figure out what box fits to the vast sky and all the ways that we can exist in the world.

And so that, that continued evolution of what it means, I'm sure is, is also part of the joy and the experience of yourself. Thank you.

Cy: Yeah, I think had I been ready to transition younger, I would have looked at it in a lot more simple and binary terms, whereas now I really do embrace being a non binary, queer, trans person, like, I think if younger me had been like, I'm transitioning, it would have been like a very like, more cut and dry thing and I'm really like trying to embrace the weird journey than it's been versus like trying to have a destination specifically.

So, um, I think there's something awesome about not having a destination.

Nicole: Beautiful. Yeah. And I'm so thankful for the work that you're doing to create the spaces that you're creating for queer people and psychedelics and to be a resource for them. We, we definitely need you in this world.

Cy: Thank you. I'm grateful to be here.

Nicole: So, yeah. Where would you want to plug for people that are connecting with you and want to hear more about all the work that you're doing?

Cy: The best place to find me is probably, unfortunately, Instagram. Like, I'm a one person show with Queerly Psychedelic, so I, like, if you want to follow what I'm doing You can find me there.

I occasionally speak and sometimes do podcasts. Yeah. Apparently I can check that little box. Hell yeah. People can message me on there. Like, I'm chill. I try and be responsive. I also limit my time because social media is, like, not always great for my mental health. But, you know, I would hope in the next year to be doing some more in person events.

I'm doing a test taking some queer folks out to the desert to view the eclipse. Um, and be in queer communities, so would hope that I can take that, and Make another one for other queer people. So, I guess just follow me on Instagram and if there's something you want to do or collaborate, hit me up. I'm down.

I'm in the Denver ish area, but I'm down to do things all over the place. So, yeah. Queerly underscore psychedelic. I guess I should probably put that out there. I guess if you like search queerly psychedelic, I'm the only thing that comes up. So, yeah.

Nicole: And I'll have it linked in the show notes below too so people can go directly to it.

Cy: Thank you so much. Of course.

Nicole: Thank you. Keep shining your bright light.

Cy: Thank you. I appreciate it. Thanks for having me on.

Nicole: If you enjoyed today's episode, then leave us a five star review wherever you listen to your podcast. And head on over to modernanarchypodcast. com to get resources and learn more about all the things we talked about on today's episode.

I want to thank you for tuning in and I will see you all next week.


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