Once you’ve made it past the first date butterflies and lust-laden escapades of summer induced spontaneity, you may have walked yourself into a full-blown relationship. Next thing you know it’s been a few years, the magic has turned to some dry spells, and you’re wondering if the spark is gone. To share a life with someone you love is something you are thankful for, but still you are left searching for something deeper in hopes of reforming the fiery bond that once was, because it really was special.
Psilocybin has a stellar reputation for reflecting life’s deeper meanings, as it uniquely facilitates a heightened sense of openness and unity with life when consumed. Though everyone experiences psychedelics differently, there is something about the empathy enhancing qualities of psilocybin that tells us a whole lot of couples could perhaps benefit from a quality trip—and we don’t mean to the Bahamas.
If you are yet to meet a couple who does mushrooms together, I’ll tell you first hand that there is a different type of electricity involved. When you think about it, entheogenic trips are a very intimate experience. The diminishment of ego and expanding awareness can sometimes make the demons in our closet come out for a dance party, whether we are prepared to battle them or not. In psilocybin-assisted couples therapy, the administration of psilocybin is geared toward increasing feelings of empathy and compassion in both partners, so that obstacles can be addressed at a level of understanding which our auto-pilot minds often forget they are capable of reaching.
Empathy in Couples
When we are unable to empathize with our partner’s ill-feelings or thoughts, it can begin to sound like whining or complaining to us. In reality, these “complaints” will become deeply held issues that turn to resentment when unresolved. So how does this get managed? Let’s remember, compassion holds the key to saving this world, relationships included.
Empathy is a crucial element in a thriving relationship, accounting for things like communication, trust, and bonding. Empathy allows us to properly communicate with our partner by understanding their perspective in full, making problems easier to resolve when both sides are seen. When we undergo prolonged periods of stress or annoyance, it can lead to a decrease in cognitive empathy. A decrease in cognitive empathy can show itself in the form of unnecessary judgment towards a partner, traits of self-absorption, as well as an unwillingness to communicate or change. More often than not, familiarity breeds contempt or complacency. This means we can take people for granted the more we are around them, depleting general effort and making empathy something difficult to muster up. In this form of familiarity, it can actually become easier to find faults in our partner, opposed to the things we love.
Psilocybin-assisted therapy success can be attributed to its ability to raise empathy and connectedness in patients, making it easier for couples to facilitate deeper communication. The ego dissolution traits of psilocybin can make it easier to express empathy, as you are more likely to step into the shoes of your partner by breaking down the border between self and others. Surveys have shown that individuals who have used psychedelics score higher in emotional empathy, in comparison to those who have not. The empathogenic qualities of psilocybin have been under observation for years, often relating back to a heightened sense of unity and oneness with all things when emotional empathy is increased.
When you ingest psychedelics with a partner, it can surge a rollercoaster of emotions that can be both uncomfortable and blissful. As we tend to get wrapped up in things like financial burdens, work stress, and home upkeep, dedicating a night to re-visiting the foundation of our relationship can be an unorthodox concept, to say the least.
The Couple Experience
Seeing as professional psilocybin-assisted therapy is not tangible for all couples, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere to facilitate a psilocybin experience of your own can be just as beneficial when executed properly. Ensuring that both partners are on the same page and comfortable with the idea of a shared psychedelic experience is step one, and after that it’s about prioritizing open communication and allowing the magic to do what it must, as you simply listen, digest, and experience.
Some couples have gone so far as to say engaging in psychedelic experiences together have saved their relationships, rekindling a lost spark with the help of a more gracious and empathetic mindset. The enhanced feelings of openness and gratitude towards your partner can manifest itself in a variety of ways, with perhaps not one outcome being more successful than the next. Whether it be uncontrollable fits of laughter or hours of deep talks, all outcomes can be embraced as they coincide with the needs of your relationship. (Which might just be some fun!)
Setting an intention with your partner that emphasizes a certain goal, can also be beneficial. Things like “I want to practice intimacy with you” or “I’d like to explore our pasts” are common initiatives that may be set for a couple’s trip, but should be prefaced more as “If we feel able to do so,” opposed to “we must discuss this.” There is a separation between intention and expectation, which is why holding trust for both your partner and the medicine is so crucial in allowing a first-time experience such as this to flow naturally in the direction it should.
As the regular sense of self is broken down, the room begs two partners to connect as one. The commonly faced struggles of day to day life is no longer the main priority, but it is instead prepared to restructure the way you feel about the person you love on a more compassionate level. This level of connection is something the default mind will seldom reach, therefore when two partners can find the same wavelength in a psychedelic experience, it can be a very bonding moment for both parties.
Couples who have undergone mushroom trips together will often note similar effects, such as a deepened appreciation for their partner, a sense of unity and connection, emotional releases upon the addressment of their issues, as well as euphoric walks down memory lane. The linger effects of this connective activity can last for weeks and even months, which is why many couples have integrated psychedelic experiences into their relationships as a special occasion to look forward to and benefit from.
Getting down to the brass tacks of it, we know that a night of mushrooms isn’t guaranteed to patch up layers of long harboured issues. Relationships range in complexity, with each hardship requiring something different. Psilocybin can bring a level of openness to conversations that are often avoided, making it an effective tool in breaking down communicative boundaries and potentially paving the way for more insightful conversations to take place on a more regular basis going forward.