|post replypost new topic|
Posted: April 15, 2019, 8:04 AM
I’ve been smoking marijuana for a long time. I want to quit but don’t know where to start. Would love to hear from others on how they quit.
Posted: April 16, 2019, 7:26 AM
Hi and welcome to this safe place!
I quit a long time ago. But I hope my experience will help you. I was a heavy, regular, long-time smoker. I quit cold turkey. Just stopped . . . got rid of EVERYTHING associated with it.. . and didn't hang with any friends who indulged. So, there was no easy access. I'd have to say the first 7-10 days were the roughest. I tried to anticipate the mood changes, inability to sleep, crankiness, etc and ramped up on vitamins, supplements and stuff. To be totally honest . . . Unfortunately, I sort of substituted . . . at least initially. I drank more and smoked more cigs. I never had so many drinks that I got drunk; but I certainly used alcohol to calm down and to change my behavior. For a while, rather than come home and roll up, I came home and made a drink. But over a few weeks, I started to cut back on that bc the goal was not to pick up a new habit. The other problem was my appetite . . . or lack thereof. Wasn't hungry or interested in food. Can't remember if I lost weight. But I do remember that after a few weeks, my appetite came back, too.
I told myself that I wasn't quitting forever. I took it one day, one moment, one breathe at a time. And, constantly reminded myself of why I was quitting.
While I didn't do AA or NA, I talked . . . often and frequently to my 2 best friends . . . who also indulged but lived very far away. I guess they were sort of my sober coaches or sponsors. (Sounds like an oxymoron, right??) They stayed on the phone with me and 'entertained' my mind when I wanted to soothe my soul with bud.
Hope this is helpful. Let us know how you are doing.
This post has been edited by hurtingmom on April 16, 2019, 7:28 AM
I forgot to read the fine print, when i signed up to be your Mom. I thought it would be smiles & hugs and quite a lot of fun.
I didn’t see the part about addiction, mental illness, pain, hopelessness or despair. I didn’t know life could be so flipping unfair.
But I now see something in the fine print that I didn’t see before. It also says to survive your addiction, I must love me more.
In Loving Memory of my angel, J. #forever21 #ihateaddiction #foreverloved
Posted: April 16, 2019, 10:10 PM
Sorry . . . my first response was sort of rushed; I was on my way to work. Gosh . . . you took me back down memory lane. I had to think about this a lot more and remember that there was A LOT of planning and preparing and thinking BEFORE I quit. It wasn't like I just woke up one morning and said, "I'm quitting today" and just stopped. I set a Quit Date 45 days out.
For me, I spent most of my time during those 45 days examining my patterns, behaviors and triggers. For the first week or 2 (or maybe it was 3), I started to REALLY pay attention. I paid attention and did a lot of self-examination re when I wanted to smoke, why I wanted to smoke, where I smoked, with whom, was I smoking to escape, etc. And, I started to notice some patterns. For example, I learned that I liked to smoke as soon as I got home at the end of the day. It was my way of unwinding and decompressing from the stresses of the day. Soooooo . . . I started to look for other ways I could unwind and relax when I got home . . . other coping mechanisms that I would enjoy. (Reading a book? A drink? Taking a walk? Crochet? Take a nap? By the time I did quit, I made a list of (like) 10 things to do to relax when I got home, including have a drink, read the newspaper, talk to my bffs, take a nap and gardening. Number 11 was to smoke. After Quit Day, I told myself that I had to do at least 6 things on that list . . . any 6 things. . . IF I still wasn't calm, cool & collected after doing those things. . . I had permission to go purchase & indulge. You know what? I never indulged. I'd like to say that it was bc all that I did provided peace. Nah. Sometimes I was too tired or lazy or it was too late/early to go out and do all I needed to do TO indulge bc . . . remember I threw everything out.) Another example. I learned that I liked to smoke before I went to the movies. So you know what? For the first month or two or three, I didn't go to the movies. You get the idea.
The last 3 or so weeks before Quit Day, I tried to cut back . . . or have bud-free periods of time. Back in the day, my pattern was to get up and roll up as my coffee brewed. By the time I was pouring my first cup of coffee, I was on my 2nd J. So, again, recognizing this pattern and taking baby steps to prepare for Quit Day, I delayed the first J until after the coffee was done for 3 or 4 days. (I can remember watching the coffee pot on Day 1 & wondering if the coffee will ever be done. But then I learned to distract myself by watching TV or walking the dog or exercising). Then I increased the time to 20 minutes after coffee was ready for days 5-7. I worked up to no bud before noon. Again, I won't say that I didn't watch the clock the first few days and was at the ready at 11.59 am. I was.
Any old way . . . adjust the time periods according to you & how much you smoke. The idea is that by the time Quit Day comes, you aren't going cold turkey from smoking your usual (let's say)10 Js or Ls per day; you are stopping from smoking (for example) 2-3. AND . . . you have a plan in place . . . a strategy . . . ideas . . . of what to do when the desire hits. (Because it WILL hit.)
Hope that something in all of my ramblings was helpful.
This post has been edited by hurtingmom on April 17, 2019, 11:11 AM
Posted: April 17, 2019, 10:35 PM
Thank you hurtingmom for wise advice. I really like your plan of action. You have great insight. I’m going to have to pick a quit date 30 or 45 days out. I’m so stoked because you’ve broke down a very real way to stop smoking.
I’m a heavy smoker too and can realate to lighting up with morning coffee. Heck I partake all through the day. I definitely need a new coping mechanism instead of smoking.
So I’m going to get a journal and start this process. It’s funny too cause it’s legal in my state and I’m burned out already after years of use. Just knowing I can buy it everywhere makes it easier to think about quitting. That probably sounds weird but that’s how I feel.
I really feel positive about quitting now so your words have helped me totally. You’ve definitely have walked in my shoes. I know it’s not like quitting the harder drugs but still it’s gonna be challenging. Everyone in my circle including family is weed friendly. I can’t see myself not spending time with my family. No one pushes it on me I’ve just always been a smoker. They would support me not smoking because I have a terrible smokers cough. That should be enough for me to quit but it hasn’t. So it’s time.
I’m a analytical type person so this journaling will be cool. Does that sound like a good start? Do you recommend that I take breaks and stretch out smoking?
I’m not telling anyone what I’m doing. It’s gonna be obvious soon enough. Were you pretty much ready to quit by your quit date? Did you suffer much? I guess I’m scared cause it’s been part of my identity forever.
You weren’t rambling either you make perfect sense. Do you think I should still be on here or come back when I’m done smoking? I’m sorry for all the questions it’s just that I want to do this right.
When I found this site I felt hopeful. You’ve made me feel welcome. Blessings to you
Posted: April 20, 2019, 6:44 PM
So glad that something I said was helpful.
For me, I did start to notice my patterns long before the countdown. Y'know smoking makes most folks very analytical. Use this time to think about why you are smoking, what you enjoy most about it, what you hope to gain by quitting, etc. Don't freak yourself out . . . or make yourself crazy . . . by analyzing & journaling. Just ponder . . . think . . . freely associate. Pay attention to what you are doing, when you are doing it, and how you feel/what you think getting high will do for you and jot it down. If you smoke with others, you can have some of these convos with them. (You don't have to share that you are thinking about quitting.)
Example . . . I can remember chatting with my friends. . . while we were having a smoking session. And, we all noted that we felt more social, articulate and happy when we smoked. We liked ourselves better. Felt more socially acceptable. In short, it was also a way of escaping from being in our heads . . . from uncomfortable feelings . . . or situations. Then . . . in another session . . . we talked about what bud did to help us. And we said (way before Katt Williams) that bud has this wonderful chemical element called "Eff It." So, armed with this insight regarding me, I had to think of ways to get to the same fearless/I don't give a damn state WITHOUT indulging. This did take a bit of introspection as well as therapy. Getting comfy in my own skin. But . . . I accepted me as I am. Round peg and all.
A part of your journal can also be about learning to love you w/o indulging. Learning to deal with life without rolling and sparking up. Learning to entertain yourself without bud. Etc. You can buy a journal if you think it will be safe. (Don't think you want family to stumble across and read your intimate thoughts.) Or, I've kept one on my laptop, which is password protected. The best place, because you have all of us to love, encourage and support you, is here. Smile.
P.S. Perhaps you are a stronger soul than I was, but I knew me. Give me an opportunity and I'll take it . . . especially in the beginning. But, you gotta know yourself. I knew that I couldn't sit there, for example, while 'they' were passing and let it pass me by. So, I chatted with my bud-loving friends and family by phone, or we met at the mall, or did something or went some where where sparking up was NOT an option. At least initially.
Posted: April 22, 2019, 2:47 PM
Hey Hip!! How's it going?
Wanted to comment on something you said. You said that you wanted to get this 'right.' I am happy that you are committed to quitting. But I'm here to tell you that there is no 'right' way to quit any addiction, habit or bad behavior. I wish to God there was a one-size-fits-all answer. But there isn't. Different things work for different folks. Or, sometimes people need to hear the message over and over (and, sometimes, over) again. Others can't hear it or deal with it at one point in time but can at a different time in their lives. Some go to detox/rehab/IOP/sober living route. Others go to AA or NA. Others use Smart Recovery. Some get sober coaches. Some use FB groups. Some do cold turkey. There are so many options out there. Come to think of it . . . There wouldn't be this many choices if there was only ONE 'right' way. I think the goal is to be committed to being in remission and keep looking for a method/program that works for YOU!!!
You also asked was I ready to quit by Quit Day. I'll be honest. Nope. One develops a relationship with any bad behavior. We grow accustomed to it. With Quit Day, change pimp slaps you in the face. For me it wasn't only about stopping smoking. It was also about stopping a way of life that I had lived for years and years; and finding a new way of living without the mask/crutch/hug/love/escape of bud. That's some scary ish right there. That's when you review your reasons for quitting. Shoot . . . I carried copies of mine in my car, in my purse, on my mirror, etc. By the way . . . make sure that you celebrate yourself when you do see, feel or make progress!!
Yes, cutting back or having hiatus periods is wonderful. If nothing else, it is confidence boosting!! Another thing to celebrate and congratulate yourself for. Remember . . . progress . . . not perfection.
Let us know how you are doing,
This post has been edited by hurtingmom on April 22, 2019, 2:50 PM
|post replypost new topic|