Medical Fetishism, Benzo Withdrawal, and the Swedish Avant-Garde

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Medical Fetishism, Benzo Withdrawal, and the Swedish Avant-Garde


The more people I get to know (and I don’t just mean that in the biblical sense), the more I learn that everyone is a pervert. Wave your freak flag high kids, we’re all sexual deviants! If your porn search terms wouldn’t give your grandmother a heart attack, then you’re not doing it right. Unless your browsing on kiddie-porn sites, in which case, seek help immediately before shit gets real.

Medical fetishism is an umbrella term for sexual attraction to anything medicine related. It’s quite mainstream; just look at all the sexy-nurse Halloween costumes. And admit it, the CD cover of Enema of the State totally aroused you. The speculum, uh I mean spectrum, of medical fetishism ranges from simply being turned on by doctors to purchasing your own enemas and giving anal exams to your partner. I’ve never gone that far, as a sufferer of digestive issues who has already undergone colonoscopies in her early 20s, the only ass play I’m into is regular ole butt sex.

Yet here in the VICE confessional, I admit I’ve masturbated to gyno porn. I think it has something to do with BDSM tendencies—someone restrained in stirrups while a pervy doctor sticks things in them is hot. This is a fantasy that is completely limited to my bedroom and an incognito Chrome browser, I don’t get turned on by going to the real gyno. I get scared because I have OCD and am always worried I’ve contracted something regardless of my actual exposure risk. Plus, once an older male gynecologist I saw when I first moved to New York told me, “Your boyfriend is very lucky,” while he was examining me. He was asking about where I was from and what I was did for a living to try and make me comfortable when he said it, so I don’t think he was referring to my actual vagina, but still, with my legs spread eagle in stirrups it was HORRIBLE timing, and I now see a chick gyno.

If you’d like to explore medical fetishism, there are plenty of ways to go about it, depending on how extreme you want to go. For beginners try typing “doctor,” “gyno,” or “rectal exam” into the search bar of your favorite porn site. If you want to try role-playing, you can buy doctor or nurse outfits on fucking Amazon. Medical sex toys are available at my favorite sex-toy retailer, Babeland, but if you want the really freaky shit, like an “extreme ass spreader” (which is currently out of stock on, you’re going to have to go to a sketchier specialty website. If you just want a stethoscope or an exam table for your sex dungeon, you could just go to your neighborhood medical-supply store, come to think of it.


I’ve been prescribed benzos more often than I’ve been finger-blasted. And I don’t just mean I went to the doctor and was like, “Uhh.. I’m scared of flying, can I have some Xanax?” I mean, “Hi, I’m having a panic attack so bad I went to the hospital thinking I was having a heart attack.” In such cases, benzos are the right treatment, although once I saw this psychiatrist for insomnia and panic attacks, and she told me that I didn’t actually have anxiety but rather untreated ADD.

Shrink: “Have you ever tried and enjoyed cocaine?”

Sophie: “Uh… yeah?” (Whatever, if the president can admit to it, so can I.)

Shrink: “Yes, see, you enjoyed it because it helped you concentrate. Would you like a prescription for Adderall?”

Sophie: “Uh… sure?”

I was young. Giving amphetamines to treat someone for insomnia and panic attacks does not end well. I realize this is my second negative story about doctors, but there are a lot of amazing ones, you’ve just got to shop around. My current gyno and shrink are dope as fuck. Recently, one told me something about benzos that really scared me:

“Don’t ever suddenly stop taking them, you could die. You have to slowly ween yourself off.”

Benzos are great for short-term anxiety treatment, but dangerous long-term because your dependence and tolerance rise, and they’re easy to abuse. If you’ve been on them consistently, don’t just throw them out the second you open a Deepak Chopra book. Benzo withdrawal symptoms include tremors, heightened anxiety, panic attacks, nausea, seizures, and even death in rare cases. I experienced this living in a tent in the middle of nowhere on the tip of Mexico in Baja California Sur the month after I graduated college. I was there to get certified to teach yoga and reset before entering the next chapter of my life. Meditation, drum circles, vision quests, rattlesnakes, and swimming naked in the Pacific, it was basically like living in a hippie commune for a month. Anyways, I was on Ativan (lorazepam) at the time and was basically like, Fuck this, I’m not taking any meds while I’m here.

One evening in a yoga hut, I started experiencing stabbing pains in my chest running down my arm. My entire left arm was tingling, and I lost use of my fingers. I couldn’t breathe. The symptoms were so intense I thought I was having a heart attack, and that really freaked me out because I was living in a fucking tent an hour’s drive from any city. I told a yoga instructor, and they suggested I go see their homeopathic doctor in the morning, or if I was too scared now, they could take a picture of my eye and send it to her, and she would be able to tell what was wrong with me (seriously).

The next day I rode in a van to the homeopathic doctor. She was quite lovely actually, she gave me a bottle of some herbal concoction, did one of those Chinese-medicine muscle tests, looked at my eye, and concluded that it was just anxiety. But then she listened to my heart with a stethoscope and was like, “Uh… maybe you should go see a cardiologist,” and off the van took me to a Mexican cardiologist. After an EKG and other tests he concluded my heart was fine, the homeopathic doctor had just heard a normal heart murmur and agreed that it was just an extreme panic attack and ordered me to continue taking my meds. So I guess the lesson is don’t suddenly stop taking benzos, especially if you’re living in a tent miles away from civilization.


After all that talk about anal expanders and panic attacks in the Mexican desert, how about a little instrumental palette cleanser?

Above, please enjoy the premiere of Swedish avant-garde band Kriget’s new video for “Aghori Diet.” The track is the B-side to their seven-inch, a teaser to the forthcoming full-length album Dystopico, already out in Sweden but yet to be unleashed on America. They keep it simple: drums, sax, and bass. It’s not just on their tracks the group doesn’t like to talk, Kriget is mysteriously silent, and there’s not much information out on them. Between the lack of lyrics and the lack of press they’re beautifully androgynous; in reality, the group is composed of three ominous men.

The underground EDM scene in Stockholm has blown up lately, scattering debris such as Kriget overseas. The video for “Aghori Diet” was filmed during a gigantic warehouse party right before Christmas, so the people you see are probably actually rolling balls. I get hate for this, but I’m not so huge into the EDM scene. Whenever I hear a song described as a “banger,” my labia shrivels. Yet the lovely thing about Kriget is they’ve maintained a prominent force in the Stockholm techno scene without losing their avant-garde artistic weirdness. Basically, they’re not douchey whatsoever. But from the sole interview I’ve read of theirs with MTV, they are kind of assholes, which makes me love them more.

Lately I’ve been listening to a lot of Johnny Cash. The sound of a tortured soul’s voice, someone who has lived, lost, and loved so much is oddly comforting to me. My fondness for darkness is what first attracted me to Kriget. The A-side to the seven-inch “Holy Mountain” has the most beautifully fucked-up video. An adorable Swedish daughter and her mother murder the father with witchcraft and art supplies. Nice work, Kriget, balancing out your introduction to America visually though a horror flick on the A-side and a warehouse party on B. I’ve said it before, you’ve got to embrace your dark side. And as I learned during my silent meditations during my month in Mexico, a break from words can do wonders.



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