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Hi folks,

Just a quick note in regards to the moderation of the group. Sometimes if I am a bit short on time or if we get a lot of posts at once I may have to just skim the overall gist of the posts rather than reading them word for word before I approve them, also we all have a different perspective as to what is acceptable and thus there may sometimes be the odd post that gets through that you may feel is inappropriate. And while this doesn’t seem to happen very often if there is anything that anybody reads and feels is inappropriate then please feel free to either shoot me a PM or use the contact form to let me know and I will always be happy to take another look at it.

Please keep in mind however that a post does have to be quite bad or harmful to the group as a whole for us to delete it, I don’t like to be too heavy handed with that kind of moderation and try to reserve it for only when it is absolutely necessarily as generally I like people to be able to have their say and most things can be ironed out with dialogue and often we can all learn from it, that said if you feel something is inappropriate like I say please feel free to let me know and I will be happy to take another look.


All the best,

Cannabis Rehab Admin

If you wish to Use then Use, Your Body Your Choice, You're NOT a Criminal and I wish you well!

My Choice is to be Drug Rehabilitated for 15 years because I Chose to be free from its Control on me!
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Headed Back to Sobriety

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  • Headed Back to Sobriety

    marijuana withdrawal symptoms relief
    Hi everyone, my name is jb3 and my cannabis usage is out of control, again. I'm 41, and I've been using since I was 19. Most of that time, I was a sporadic user, but usually not by choice. My friends and I never had any good connections, so I had periods where I would go months between bags. When I had a bag, I smoked everyday.

    In 2001, after a bad mushroom trip, I decided to get completely clean. I blamed my lack of achievement and unhappiness on the drugs. For 4.5 years I didn't use pot, alcohol or tobacco (or any other substances). I ditched all my old friends to get rid of temptation, and started building a new life. On paper, things seemed to go well. I went to grad school in order to start a new career, and ended up getting a great job. I ran a marathon, got married and made new friends.

    But all was not well. For ten years I had been off and on various psychiatric medications for depression. During my sobriety, even though I had achieved a lot (for me), I was not happy. On a scale of -10 to +10 on a mood scale, I usually felt -1. And where in the past I would obsess about drugs, I now focused that energy on sex. I spent all my time plotting various affairs with inappropriate women. I guess I was lucky that I was never able to pull it off, because I'm sure I would now be ashamed of my actions.

    Anyway, after 4.5 years clean, I was feeling pretty down. My mom died, I was laid off from work, and I failed miserably at starting my own business. I fell out with my new friends and felt pretty lonely. So one day, I called my old best-friend after a few years not seeing him, went over to his house and got high.

    Instantly, I felt like I had found what was missing from my life. If I had smoked during that time, maybe my work would have been more creative, maybe I would have been more ambitious, maybe I would have been...happier. I started to think of my period of sobriety as the "lost years". I convinced myself a life with the extreme highs of the drug lifestyle was worth the inevitable lows. My depression was a lot easier when sober, but I never felt "really good". I came to think that I never really had a problem with pot; it was other people with their misguided morality and their laws that made me feel guilty about using. And then there was the bipolar diagnosis.

    What a revelation! For the first time, my life started to make sense. I could now clearly see periods of depression and mania dating back to puberty. Realizing there were many times I was depressed or manic, and not using, I stopped blaming drugs. In the future, I would be prepared for the ups and downs. I went online to research the disorder and found that most of the literature was not keen on cannabis. I ignored what I didn't want to hear, and focused on the fact that no one could prove cannabis caused mental illness. I even found articles and studies that hypothesized pot might help alleviate symptoms of depression. That seemed to be my experience anyway.

    Not long after that, I got my first good connection, and I had pot almost anytime I wanted it. I started using a vaporizer, and that made it easy to use all day without the telltale smoke and smell. I was also a new father, and I stayed at home to watch my son while my wife worked. The pot gave me the energy to keep going when I felt like going into my room and sleeping all day. It wasn't long before I started growing.

    And it wasn't long before cracks started showing in the foundation of my new weed-positive lifestyle. Because vaporizing is slower than smoking, I soon found myself spending 4-6 hours a day just getting high, ignoring childcare, housework, family. the drug brought on mania, and I was soon romantically pursuing two of my female neighbors (a very delusional time to say the least). I had a psychotic breakdown brought on by lack of sleep and some very strong weed. Pot was definitely a problem, or was it...

    Obviously it was, but I kept using more and more. It's now been three years of heavy daily use. Most nights I go to bed feeling guilty/depressed/anxious. I swear to detox the next day, but the vaporizer is usually on withing 10 minutes of waking, and my son is in front of the TV for 1.5 hours while I get high. If I am in the process of getting high, and he or my wife want my attention for even a minute, I get extremely irritable and nasty.

    Looking back on the past three years, I am so ashamed. I've spent way more time getting high than I have with my own son. All day long, pot is the only thing I think about. Right after finishing, I start planning the next time I will use (usually 3-4 hours later), and hoping that it will be a better high than the one I just achieved. I scour the web, trying to find the best strains at the dispensaries. Money is just flying out of my pocket, and my wife is getting suspicious.

    I have got to stop, and that's why I am here.

    Yesterday, I woke up intending to quit. I've seen this cannabis rehab site before, but last night was the first time I really dug in and started reading. It wasn't long before I noticed my defenses coming up, and I was getting kind of angry at people for writing things that didn't give me an excuse to dig into that OG Kush I've got lying around. So I kept reading, and seized on the fact that many people here were sober, but still experiencing depression. That, combined with all the desperately miserable people on the mental health rehab group I go to, gave me an opening, and my resolve to detox vanished. I had only made it 21 hours. After a few good laughs watching a movie, I went to bed and the mental torture began.

    So here I am again the next day. First thing I did after waking was get back on the rehab group and read more. Now I'm feeling really ready to quit. I want to be happier, not just for me, but for the people in my life. I've never been sober and completely compliant with my psych meds, so that is my next step. Thanks for reading, and thanks to all the people whose writing helped me make up my mind.

    Today is Day One.

  • #2
    Hi jb3 and welcome to the forum.

    I too have experienced mental health problems and self medicated with cannabis, I also have experienced bipolar like symptoms like swinging between mania and depression , I have read that many people who have a bipolar tendency use cannabis, there are some who believe that it helps with some of the symptoms you can experience with this kind of problem, I did myself for a good while, but in the long term I started to experience it was making all of these symptoms worse not better, so much that I ended up getting in a right mess. If there was any benefit in the short term it was more than cancelled out the longer I continued to use it. In the end the pot seemed to be making the anxiety and depression worse as well as other psychosis like symptoms including extreme paranoia and anxiety. I think a lot of us here struggle with the justifications we use to continue to smoke and question whether we really would be better off without it, I too used to get angry when I heard or read about a point of view that didn’t endorse, support or justify my use of it, which is a fairly typical way of thinking amongst people who have an addiction, that’s one of the ways in which addiction can affect your way of thinking, unfortunately wanting something to be true doesn’t necessarily make it the case and yes people who don’t smoke dope also experience mental health problems too, but that goes for a lot of things, for example the fact that people who don’t smoke cigarettes get cancer too doesn’t mean that cigarettes don’t cause cancer, it doesn’t prove that there isn’t a link between the one and the other, I think the only way to prove whether you are going to be better off without it is to try it for a while and see how you react, bear in mind though that to give it a fair chance you may have to do this for quite some time, you won’t necessarily start to feel better the next week, some people find that the detox symptoms have not even began at that point let alone started to subside, if you have been using cannabis for a very long time some people find it takes months before they start to feel better, one person who posted said that they asked their shrink about it who said that some of the people they have seen it can take up to a year and a half, bear in mind though that this time period can be extremely different for everybody, some people are fortunate enough to feel a lot better after a matter of weeks, it really can vary.

    Anyway well done on your decision to quit, waking up and smelling the coffee can be half the battle in its self, it won’t necessarily be easy but we will be with you every step of the way, there are plenty of people here experiencing exactly the same things, you really are not alone.

    Take care, thanks for posting, that really was a very good post, we appreciate the time you have taken to share your story with us and please continue to do so.

    All the best
    Cannabis Rehab Admin

    If you wish to Use then Use, Your Body Your Choice, You're NOT a Criminal and I wish you well!

    My Choice is to be Drug Rehabilitated for 15 years because I Chose to be free from its Control on me!

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks BFB. Like others have said, this website is making a huge, positive difference in many peoples lives. I do hope someday to pay it forward...

      Anyway, I'm on here again to write and help clarify my thoughts. I'm still on day one, and right now I'm feeling like I won't be able to sleep. Not a big deal in the short term; my sleep has been terrible for years, so I think I can handle it. I have klonopin that I use 1-2x a week to help sleep, but I'm not going to take it. I'm starting to hear more and more about benzos not being good for depression, so I 'll probably avoid them in the future.

      I'm also feeling a bit edgy, like I may be headed for a little hypomania. I'm so excited about quitting, it's all I can think about. I tried talking to my wife about it a little, but I could tell she wasn't in to it, probably due to the hundreds of times I told her I was quitting cigarettes and then didn't. But the feeling I have now is like the feeling I had back in November when I did kick the nicotine habit. Yesterday I spent the whole day knowing in the back of my mind I couldn't do it, but today, I woke up knowing I could.

      I'm already imagining the better life I'll have, but I'm purposely not thinking about how hard this may get. Earlier today I thought "Hmm, now that I quit weed, maybe I should clean the garage." Immediately after the thought, I felt a wave of depression come over me, because I really didn't want to clean the garage, and I was disappointed that my 12 hours of sobriety had not given me the resolve to complete every task on my internal to-do list. Real life is trying to intrude, but I'm pushing it away for a few days until I feel stronger. My wife has agreed to cut me some slack for a while if I get too grumpy or lazy, and that is a big relief.

      In many ways, I am a very lucky man.

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi jb3,

        Your story sounds all too familiar. I’ve been off the drug for just over a week now, it’s tough but I’m coping. Not really in a position to offer much advise at this stage, but give it a few days and I reckon you’ll be ready to tackle that garage! After a couple of days of sobriety I scrubbed my whole flat and although I found it hard to focus on one job at a time, it felt fantastic when I completed the task. It will help burn off some of that anxiety too.

        Keep strong!

        Comment


        • #5
          Today is the start of day three, and I'm feeling pretty good. This time I have not had any cravings, and if I did have them, I'm sure I would use. But truly believing this is the only way turns cravings into aversion.

          In October and November of last year I had to stop using for a week, two times, because we we're out of town house hunting and moving. I don't remember any physical side effects either time, but I think I might have been a bit irritable and had a few vivid dreams. Part of the reason it was so easy was that I knew I would be back using soon. This time things are a bit different.

          After coming on here and reading descriptions of the detox symptoms, I started to look for them, and this time I am noticing things. I am eating less, because my stomach is slightly off, and I feel a kind a kind of nervous energy centered around the middle of my chest. It's kind of like tachycardia, but very manageable for me. And yesterday evening, I experienced night sweats and vivid dreams. Did you know Sean Penn had the flesh eating bacteria, and that Justin Timberlake is gay and licks nicotine patches? I didn't either...until last night.

          I still haven't felt like cleaning, and boredom is an ever present threat, but these things are no big deal. Anyway, I finished my reading my first novel in a while, and I'm looking forward to another one starting tonight. Reading at night, when my wife and son are asleep, is a nice substitute for my usual evening cannabis binge.

          Okay, enough for now. My son won't leave me alone until I get off the computer and play Superheroes with him.

          Comment


          • #6
            Day 23 and things are fairly good. I've had many moments of anxiety and irritability, but they always fade. I'm not even sure they are related to MJ detox since I've had these same feelings before I quit, and even before I was a hardcore toker.

            I've only had one episode of cravings, but there was no temptation to give in to it. I was in a highly anxious state and I was pretty sure that a bowl or two would cure it. It was pretty easy to ignore because I knew there was also a good chance I would feel guilt and anxiety afterwards.

            My sleep has been better since quitting (though I am taking Gabapentin), and my dreams are very interesting, not nightmares. Boredom is still an issue, but then again, I'm not doing many interesting things. I remember back to my former days of sobriety, and I know I had many interests, so I think it's just a matter of time. It doesn't help that I spend the majority of my day with a three-year-old that cannot stop talking.

            Overall, I'm glad that I quit, even though life is still far from perfect. I feel I have a much better grasp of my issues now that I am back in the "real" world. I can't believe how warped my perspective was while constantly high.

            Comment


            • #7
              Great stuff jb3, sounds like you are getting there mate!

              I can empathise with some of the stuff you are feeling, particularly the boredom. On the whole I’ve managed to deal with the anxiety and insomnia fairly well in time, but it’s really hard living like a monk! One thing I will say is that today might have been my best day yet since quitting. Just an ordinary day, nothing especially brilliant happened but I just felt totally cool with everything the world threw at me, on a Monday as well! Hopefully you’ll have a few more days like this when you hit week four.

              Take care,

              Mark

              Comment


              • #8
                marijuana withdrawal symptoms relief
                Hey Jb3 hang in there I think you are doing great! Boredom can be a big part of the struggle so it’s really important to try to rediscover those things that you used to enjoy, or even new things that interest you now, it will really help you to win the battle. So hang in there mate we are all really proud of you.

                Take care and thanks for keeping us posted
                Cannabis Rehab Admin

                If you wish to Use then Use, Your Body Your Choice, You're NOT a Criminal and I wish you well!

                My Choice is to be Drug Rehabilitated for 15 years because I Chose to be free from its Control on me!

                Comment

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