Gay Men Using Meth (Part 1): Lust, Men and Meth: A Gay Man’s Guide to Sex and Recovery
In this first episode of a three-part series on gay men using methamphetamine, host James Watson interviews Dr. David Fawcett, a psychotherapist, sex therapist and author of the book, Lust, Men and Meth: A Gay Man’s Guide to Sex and Recovery. Mark S. King, writer, activist and award-winning blogger of My Fabulous Disease, also joins the conversation and adds his personal reflections as an HIV-positive gay man in recovery from meth addiction.
Our episode guests
Dr. David Fawcett
Psychotherapist, sex therapist and author of the book, Lust, Men and Meth: A Gay Man’s Guide to Sex and Recovery
A psychotherapist and sex therapist who specializes in gay men’s health. He is the author of “Lust, Men and Meth: A Gay Man’s Guide to Sex and Recovery” which explores the intersection of gay men, drug use, and high-risk sex. David frequently presents workshops on this topic, as well as the mental health issues frequently experienced by long-term survivors of HIV. He consults with various organizations in the US and Europe on clinical practices and guidelines for substance misuse and mental health among men who have sex with men.
We should really drag this out into the daylight and talk about this as an issue that we are going to have to confront, just like we did with HIV.
Mark S. King
A writer, activist, and award winning blogger of My Fabulous Disease
An award winning blogger, author, speaker, and HIV/AIDS activist who has been involved in HIV causes since testing positive in 1985. King was named the 2020 LGBTQ Journalist of the Year by the National Lesbian and Gay Journalist Association (NLGJA), which also awarded King their “Excellence in Blogging” honor in 2014, 2016 and 2020. My Fabulous Disease won the 2020 GLAAD Award for Outstanding Blog after five consecutive nominations, and was named one of 2020’s “OUT100” by OUT Magazine.
You’re not alone, it gets better and recovery is possible. For a while I didn’t believe that. That my recovery was possible or that I even deserved it.
David Fawcett, a psychotherapist, sex therapist and author of the book, Lust,Men and Meth: A Gay Man’s Guide to Sex and Recovery, is joined by Mark S. King a writer, activist, and award-winning blogger of My Fabulous Disease. As an HIV-positive gay man recovering from meth addiction, Mark brings to life the struggles of addiction and the challenges and triumphs of recovery.
David points out that there is often a chronic loneliness faced by gay men, and meth is the kind of drug that fills this void: “You can just check out and go numb.” Mark agrees with this characterization, adding that he felt entitled to the celebration of new medications in the 90s after so much death. Mark explains, “Pretty soon I was dancing on boxes having the time of my life.”
A sense of belonging and a new found sexual currency are unpacked as connections between meth and HIV positive gay men are explored. Mark talks about the unraveling of U=U (Undetectable = Untransmittable) with the desire for “complete abandon”, and how partying on meth can lead to missing doses of HIV medication.
Meth has a unique impact on the brain by destroying the dopamine transport system, so it also has unique characteristics in terms of recovery. David points out that people using meth who are considering recovery are often relieved when they understand some of the science behind it, that the way they are feeling is normal and has scientific validation. David further guides the discussion by incorporating the “seven essential tools for a strong recovery” from his book.
The interview wraps up with words of encouragement, that recovery is possible and worth it, and what we should do as a community to help support those looking to heal.