via Pacific Standard:
The daughter of one of the country’s leading clinical researchers of psychedelic-assisted therapy visits Amsterdam.
Drugs were a big part of my upbringing in Southern California, but not in the usual way. My dad, Charles Grob, is the director of child and adolescent psychiatry at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center; he’s also one of the country’s leading clinical researchers of psychedelic-assisted therapy.
From 1993 to 1995, while I was in elementary school, he studied the physiological effects of the drug MDMA. In 1993 and then in 2001, when I was in ninth grade, he went to Brazil to study the use of ayahuasca, a hallucinogenic tea. From 2004 to 2008, while I was in college, he studied the effects of psilocybin as a therapeutic aid in treating end-stage cancer anxiety.
My dad’s research library is crammed with first-person hallucinogenic accounts, and I’ve read them all. As an only child with a tendency to heroize my eccentric father, I used much of my free time studying up so that he’d find me good company. Over the years, I became a believer in his work. A majority of the cancer patients in his psilocybin study reported more anxiety relief from one low dose of the hallucinogen than from years of anxiety drugs. Psychedelic-assisted therapy, he believes—and so do I—can truly help people.
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