Review of Triptherapie and Marcel
Due to my profession and misinformation around the use of psychedelics as medicine, I write this review anonymously, but I hope it does not take away from its authenticity.
For most of my life, I have struggled with anxiety and fear (although I couldn't have said that until recently)but fear especially of the opinions of others. I have done well academically and professionally in life and I think many people would find it hard to believe what I was really feeling. At different moments and phases in life, we can present competence and calm to the world when we are really shaking in side. The problem for me was that this became a permanent fixture in my life. Anxiety gave way to alcohol abuse which gave way to more anxiety and depression and so the vicious circle began. Next came withdrawal from work/life unless there were external reasons to engage. I had lost drive and meaning in life and sought comfort in many unhealthy ways.
I came across the renewed interest in psychedelics first in popular literature and YouTube, and then in some studies I was completing around depression. I had a typical and conservative outlook on the sensational claims that this food, or drug, or plant could cure all types of ailments. Furthermore, mushrooms, acid, cannabis were all things to be avoided as I was growing up. However, as I began to read the scientific research I became more and more curious. I wasn't interested in the recreational prospects of a trip, but rather the research findings about its impact on Treatment Resistant Depression (TRD), alcohol and other addictions, and the possibilities for human and spiritual development. Given my own struggles, and now armed with some legitimate research, I began my search to experience psilocybin therapy. I first looked at clinical trials (without success) and then was horrified by the extortionate prices of “Psilocybin Retreats” being offered. Then there were trip sitters available to hire, but this all seemed too recreational and potentially unsafe being with a complete stranger with no safeguards.
Then I found Triptherapie, and although still skeptical, was impressed that it offered the option to use their location, involved preparation and integration work and a platform for booking, reviews, cancellation policies etc. And of course, a biography of the person I would potentially be working with. And the prices, although not cheap, were not extortionate. So with a lot of apprehension, I made a booking for the Loft and set out for Rotterdam. This was my first face to face meeting with Marcel, an I appreciated how he spent sometime chatting with me beforehand to put me at ease, to describe the process and to finalize intentions. Within a short time, I felt very comfortable with him as he engaged me in conversation. His style is to put questions and then listen. His capacity to listen is impressive and I felt confident that I was being accompanied by someone who is genuine, empathetic and serious about the importance of their work.
In short, I have now completed 2 trips with Marcel. The first at the Loft which was a wonderful location but I would only recommend staying there if you have company. The second was in my apartment. These experiences were very different. The first was full of ecstasy, fun and healing of very old memories. I remember every detail of it, as if it had been recorded like a video. For a week, I relished in the new sense of connection, feeling good about myself marveling at the experience. Then, I made bad choices again, and although something significantly had shifted deep inside me, I found myself redeveloping old patterns of behavior. 3 months later I had the second experience, at a higher dose. This was very profound, more serious, and although I couldn't remember most of I knew it was highlighting a path to freedom, a sense of responsibility and commitment to self and others.
After each of these sessions, Marcel listened immediately after the trip. More importantly, however, in the days following the session, he was available by phone to help understand the experience and integrate the insights. His advice was solid and focused and even when I didn't heed it first time, he was very empathetic. This framing work, before and after the session, is what distinguishes Marcel from just a trip sitter. He is serious about his work, he is professional and competent and his presence is kind and empathetic. And he does not exploit people's vulnerability financially.
Psychedelics might not be for everyone, and I do not recommend them to everyone. That is a personal decision for each to make. But if one does decide to do this work, I can fully recommend Marcel. I am very grateful to him and the experiences. Now I understand what people mean when they say, 'its like 10 years of psychotherapy' or it ranks 'as one of the most significant life experiences.' I can relate to both and am very happy to have done it with Triptherapie and especially Marcel as my guide.
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