“Have you met my best friend, Molly? She’s a blast!” This has been the popular phrase amongst electronic music festival attendees and rave partygoers. Contrary to the common belief that molly is safer than other drugs because it is a ‘pure’ form of ecstasy, molly is not a safe drug. Molly is the street name for the drug MDMA, also known as ecstasy. It is now at the center of these new electronic music festivals, also known as EDM (electronic dance music) festivals. It is being taken in a powdered form replacing the more common pill form seen in the 1990’s.

Teenagers are clearly drawn to these types of festivals. The music stars, who are their heroes, and even celebrities who once seemed to promote a family-friendly image – like Miley Cyrus during her Hanna Montana days – are now promoting a culture of sex and debauchery, as witnessed in her troubling performance at the MTV Video Music Awards recently.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, sixty percent of people who took MDMA on a regular basis reported withdrawal symptoms, which is a good indication of the drug’s addictive nature. There are also many troubling side effects, which in some cases contributed to the drug-related deaths at electronic music festivals. They include:

  • Paranoia and delusions
  • Confusion and depression
  • Severe anxiety
  • Psychotic episodes
  • Uncontrollable shaking and teeth grinding
  • Sleep problems and ongoing drug cravings

Music Festivals and Drugs are Intertwined

The music scene and drug abuse have long been associated with one another. Anyone who has seen video footage of Woodstock in 1969 will remember the ominous voice heard over the loud speakers warning the crowd, “Do not take the brown acid.” Forty-four years later, the types of drugs that people are taking and the type of music they are listening to have changed, but the risk of death from a drug overdose remains the same – or even higher.

No matter how many safety precautions the event promoters try to employ, there’s little they can do to stop teenage drug abuse from happening at these concerts. Young people are looking for an epic, otherworldly experience when attending these festivals and it isn’t difficult for many of them to conceal drugs when entering the event.

Even if parents warn their children about the dangers of drug abuse and they make sure their kids are drug-free when attending these festivals, there is often no shortage of drugs available to them once on the festival grounds. The recent deaths at the Electric Zoo festival are a perfect example. At Randall’s Island in New York City over the Labor Day weekend, two concertgoers died as a direct consequence of their drug use. Both could barely be considered adults at the ages of 20 and 23.

The New York Times reported that there was rampant drug and alcohol abuse at Electric Zoo. According to the Times report, several of the festival attendees had seen dozens of people vomiting and unconscious after drinking alcohol and/or using drugs. Many of them were not being attended to by any medical staff. “You saw a lot of people puking, collapsing down and laying on the ground,” Christopher Stuebbe was quoted as saying in the article, 19, who had come to the festival from Ohio.

Additionally, the Electric Daisy Carnival has witnessed a spate of drugs in its various locations. In the 2010 Los Angeles show, a 15-year old girl died of a drug overdose. The electric music festival fared no better in Vegas, where two youngsters died just last year. The Festival was also held in Texas in 2011, and a teenager died of a drug overdose there as well. There were dozens of drug arrests by Texas police at that particular show.

Ecstasy and Molly: Same Thing, Different Era

Molly is often combined with other, more toxic substances, and there is nothing from preventing the makers of this powder from putting whatever they want in it. This situation is basically an evolution of the “raves” that were held in warehouses and other underground locations for the last couple of decades. It is common knowledge that teenagers would take ecstasy and dance to electronic music at raves until the wee hours of the morning. Raves, now known as electronic music, or EDM, festivals, have gone mainstream and ecstasy, or molly, is a hot trend among teens and one that parents need to watch out for.

Cornerstone Recovery Center is a drug and alcohol abuse treatment facility located in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. We have a knowledgeable staff that is very familiar with the symptoms of ecstasy abuse. If you think your child or a loved one has a problem with ecstasy, MDMA or molly, please call us at 1-888-711-0354 or click here to send us an email.