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loqi comments on Are wireheads happy? - Less Wrong

109 Post author: Yvain 01 January 2010 04:41PM

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Comment author: loqi 02 January 2010 11:55:32PM 1 point [-]

From the various scans that have been done of my brain; not only do I have a decreased production of Dopamine, but I have an increase in the number of receptor sites (I cannot recall from which area they sampled ). Thus, I have a major portion of dopamine sites that are demanding dopamine, and a shortage of dopamine to go around to satisfy the demand.

If you're comfortable sharing, what drugs led to this? Cocaine? Amphetamine? Did alcohol tend to be involved?

Comment author: MatthewB 03 January 2010 07:01:22AM 10 points [-]

Mostly it was Heroin, but there was a modest amount of Amphetamine usage involved as well (for completely patriotic reasons as well - /rolls eyes), and Cocaine became a problem for a few years, but strangely, I just stopped doing it one day like I would decide to throw out an old pair of underwear.

No alcohol was involved, which was mostly how I managed to get my brain into so many ƒMRI tunnels. I have never had any impairment from alcohol use, nor any dysfunction usage or abuse of alcohol either. Then, when several doctors found out about my anomalous cessation of cocaine, I got even more attention. That attention helped to free me from Heroin without the usual entanglement with a 12-step group or AA/NA (which at this point in time I have rather low opinions of).

I often wonder if I would still be alive if I hadn't started using these drugs though (which is contrary to what most people expect to hear). They do give a person a certain cognitive augmentation for each different drug, each of which can be highly useful depending upon the situation. I happened to be in a situation, during the 80s where amphetamines were indicated. I began to use the heroin because the amphetamines made me a little too shaky, and I liked the calm that the two drugs together gave me when having to do things... eventually though, all hell broke loose when I was no longer in that environment and still had the drug use (which rapidly turned into abuse). Fortunately, I am still alive and past that (well, the drug part of it. My brain still has some getting adjusted to life to do).

Comment author: Kevin 03 January 2010 11:01:17AM 0 points [-]

Is the current medication you refer to an anti-depressant? Does it do anything for you at all?

Comment author: MatthewB 03 January 2010 12:20:10PM 1 point [-]

Ugh.. I just made a huge post addressing an issue that I realized was not the one to which you are probably referring.

I don't think I referred to any current medications in the prior post. I made a reference to the use of the drugs I began to abuse, and how these allowed me to live through situations which would probably have resulted in a poor outcome otherwise (not that I could qualify the outcome as good either, save for the fact that I am alive instead of dead)...

Are you referring to the beginning of the third paragraph???

I often wonder if I would still be alive...

Comment author: spamham 03 January 2010 01:52:53PM 1 point [-]

Kevin means this I suppose?

I do know that it is possible for me to mechanically activate the motivation to perform these tasks (and I am on medication that is supposed to help, but I get the feeling it isn't)

Comment author: MatthewB 03 January 2010 03:06:22PM 2 points [-]

Ah... That... Yes... from the previous post...

I am referring mostly to anti-depressants and Drugs to control ADD, which ironically, are very much like Amphetamines (Provigil, Adderall or Ritalin, probably Provigil or Ritalin). I did a two weeks on Provigil, and I will be doing 2 weeks on Ritalin to compare the two. It is unlikely that my Dr would prescribe Adderall, but she said it isn't totally out of the question depending upon how I respond to the others (and the fact that I haven't shown any signs that I would be likely to abuse it at this point).

The current medications I am on work to a degree. I can tell when I am off my anti-depressants, for instance, yet my anti-anxiety drugs do absolutely nothing.

The drugs to control ADD are kinda a fudge by the Dr. as I have not been diagnosed explicitly as having ADD (it is something that she suspects, yet for which I haven't displayed many of the more common symptoms. If my mother had not been a Christian Scientist when I was a kid, we might have clinical records that could help out in this case a bit more), yet she feels that they will help out with some of the motivational and concentration problems I have been having with school (and life).

Comment author: Kevin 04 January 2010 06:01:17AM 1 point [-]

Yes, thank you.