Meth & Sex Groups at HIM

The pairing of crystal meth use and sex practices (sexualized meth use) is increasing world-wide among gay, bi, queer, two-spirit and other men who have sex with men. Some folks who use meth when they have sex develop a relationship with the substance that may affect their health and sense of well-being. They may start feeling that their sexuality or ability to have sex becomes dependent on meth. Many may feel like they can no longer have sex without using meth; or that they need it to have sex. Sexualized meth use may also impact their ability to implement their preferred safer sex practices like using condoms, PrEP and behavioural strategies, among others.

If you feel that you are having issues with meth use and sex, you are not alone. HIM is here for you.


Meth & Sex groups

HIM offers groups twice per year to support guys who are having issues related to sexualized meth use. We have two groups: Meth & Sex (abstinence-based), and SPUNK! (harm-reduction based). Each group is facilitated by two co-facilitators with experience working with sexualized use, who provide a safe space for participants to exchange experiences, set goals, learn about mechanisms involved in sexualized meth use, and identify strategies to overcome their challenges.

Our groups are based on peer support, Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy and Motivational Interviewing. They embrace the values of Harm Reduction, Anti-Oppression and Equity; and are open to gay, bi, queer, trans, two-spirit and other men who have sex with men of all ages struggling with crystal meth use and sex.


Current groups 2019-2:

Dates/times:

Meth & Sex (abstinence-based): Mondays, January 13 – March 9, 6:30pm – 8:30pm.
Spunk! (harm reduction based): Wednesdays, January 15 – March 4, 6:30pm – 8:30pm

Where

HIM on Davie

 

Prior registration is required. Intake interviews for potential participants start November 2019 to assess their suitability and needs for the group.

To register and schedule an intake, e-mail methandsex@checkhimout.ca


FAQs

How long are the groups/sessions?
Sessions are 2 hours long and take place weekly over 8-weeks. Groups will run at least twice per year.

How do I know which group is for me?
Our facilitators will help to determine which group best matches your needs and goals in an intake meeting.

What does the intake look like?
You will meet in person with the group facilitators and you will be asked about:
your current life (housing, employment, support), meth use, use of other drugs, readiness to be in a group setting and some general questions about your mental health.

Who is running the groups?
HIM is delivering the groups, and HIM staff and facilitators will be leading. The groups are currently funded by the BC Centre on Substance Use. These groups have also been offered in Toronto by HIM’s close community partner, ACT.

Is it confidential?
Yes, what you say is confidential. This and other ground rules will be set during the first session of each group and reminded in every subsequent session.  In a group setting, we cannot guarantee complete confidentiality and anonymity, but you may use an alternative name. Either way, in case of emergencies, the facilitator will need a way to get a hold of you.

Where is it located?
The groups will take place in the Davie Village in the West End neighbourhood of Vancouver. The exact location will be released prior to the beginning of each group. Every group session will take place in the same location, which will be wheelchair accessible. Intake interviews will take place at the HIM on Davie Health Centre.

Can I still attend if I have accessibility requirements?
If you need ASL interpretation or have other accessibility requirements, please let us know in advance as much as possible so we are able to arrange this for you.

What if I relapse during the abstinence-based group?
This can happen and our facilitators are here to help. If you relapse or are very tempted to use during the time that you are in the Meth & Sex group, please check in with the facilitators to explore options and receive support.

Will there be drug-testing?
No, there will not be drug testing (urine, blood etc.). The SPUNK! group will offer harm reduction supplies.

How do I sign up?
Contact methandsex@checkhimout.ca and let us know that you are interested in Meth & Sex, or SPUNK!  You will be contacted for an intake meeting, which will determine which group best meets your needs.  All emails are confidential.

How much do they cost?
Free. If you’d like to make a donation to HIM feel free to do so in the Health Centre, or online at https://checkhimout.ca/donate/

Will there be follow up?
In the four weeks after the groups conclude, the facilitators will be available for follow-up support. Also, a post-group, monthly drop-in check-in meeting will be organised with and for participants.


More information

For more information on our sexualized meth use support programming, please visit our events page or write to the mental health program specialist at alvaro@checkhimout.ca

For information on upcoming groups or other options that may be available to you, please write to counselling@checkhimout.ca

Health Initiative for Men respectfully acknowledges that we are privileged to be working within the ceded and unceded, ancestral, traditional, and shared territories of the Coast Salish people.

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