Here To Help Understand And Cope With Quitting.
Mr Advice
Posted: January 28, 2015, 4:13 PM

A little introduction:

If you have quit cannabis (particularly 'cold turkey') you may find yourself in what can feel like an inescapable pit. Perhaps the worst you've ever felt in your life. I'm speaking from experience here, and despite only smoking properly for less than a year, I still haven't recovered fully by any means (even though it has been nearly three months since stopping). HOWEVER, I am a lot, lot better than I have been - I have had some seriously tough times.

I don't feel I need to go into my story much more; I'm just here to tell you that it DOES get better... slowly.

Understanding how you feel (common symptoms):

- The worry and fear you have (among other specific complexities) usually comes under condition ANXIETY.

- A common symptom of anxiety after you quit weed is DEPERSONALISATION or DEREALISATION. This can be very troubling for individuals (such as myself) if you don't know what it is. It gives you that feeling of being zoned out, dream like, or still high but usually without any euphoria. It can badly affect memory and other brain functions, but remember it is only a form of anxiety. It is often described as the brain's natural way of protecting itself from traumatic events.

- Depression can also trouble individuals especially if persistent anxiety is an issue.

Combating negative side effects and moving on:

- Be positive; super hard to just do, but if you read on some thing here might help.

- Be healthy; sleep regularly at least 8 hrs, eat a balanced diet and exercise regularly (even if it is just taking walks or light jogging).

- Move on from the negative thoughts; live life and enjoy yourself by going out and smiling etc (even false smiles boost 'positive' hormone levels such a dopamine).

- Survive; even if it feels like a chore not worth doing, just get on with life, however difficult. It certainly feels great when you start feeling better which will make you glad you hung in there.

Some little tips from myself (for those who need lots of distractions):

- Read through forums such as this one whenever you feel extra bad because it should give you a little boost in hope.

- Plan things like meeting up with friends so you have things to look forward to; anything to give you purpose when you feel like you don't have any.

- Talk to friends and be honest with them; meet up in person or Skype them too!

- Confide with family; they'll hopefully never let you down as well as help you through difficult times.

- Don't get lost in your thoughts at any cost (you can think of course but do not get lost in your mind). Perhaps one of the most damaging things can be yourself. Take walks while listening to music and keep doing everyday tasks to combat this.

This is just a little something for those who needed some clarity with their situation. If I see any replies I'll try to answer if can.

Kind regards and good luck to all :)

Posted: January 28, 2015, 5:43 PM

Hi, a very helpful guide, Any idea how long it will take to get back to normal 100%?
Posted: January 29, 2015, 9:54 AM

Posts: 14
Joined: January 28, 2015

It can really vary; from what I've read some people recover in a matter of weeks or months and for some it can take a few years. I smoked for less than a year (stopped November 1st 2014) and I still feel pretty messed up by it , but no where near as messed up as I have felt (fingers crossed I'm over the worst).

I'd say that for people who have smoked for less than 2 years (not ridiculously heavily) will stabilize within a few months and by the end of a year you should start 'zoning back in'. It's the detachment you feel from the depersonalisation that is usually the biggest abnormal factor you feel.

My biggest bit of advice would be; don't damage yourself with negative thoughts. Just stay occupied and your body should return to normal state.
Posted: January 29, 2015, 10:01 AM

Posts: 14
Joined: January 28, 2015

Basically, be prepared to allow 1-2 years+ to be '100%' if you smoked a fair amount in your time. However that is 100%, you could be 90% better much earlier than that. :)

This post has been edited by Mr Advice on January 29, 2015, 10:15 AM
Posted: March 16, 2015, 5:43 PM

Posts: 14
Joined: January 28, 2015

Hi, just a quick update for anyone who is interested...

It has been 4 and a half months since I quit, and I feel so much better. Obviously I don't want to speak too soon, but I'm pretty sure I've stabilised a lot because the anxiety I felt in the early stages is so much less these days. Hopefully that is what you will find too; your anxiety (and its symptoms) will level out to a manageable amount - you will generally just start feeling more immersed in life (the 'real life').

I write this to give other people hope who are in the rough patch of stopping weed and who need some hope. I may not feel '100%' yet but I've certainly been enjoying life much more; exercising, getting things done, even some clubbing and just generally being more productive I guess.

Note: I'm not anti-weed but before anyone continues smoking it, they should do some serious reading/research. If you are not smoking the 'right stuff' you could end up with some dodgy psychosis - no 'stuff' is good for you but some of it is not definitely not right for human consumption.

This post has been edited by Mr Advice on March 16, 2015, 5:43 PM
Bobby Quitter
Posted: March 16, 2015, 9:26 PM

Hey Mr. Advice,

Thanks for the advice. I noticed you only smoked for a year, how much did you smoke? I've been smoking for four years now, daily, about an ounce a month this past year. I would say there were about 75 total days I didn't get high during this time, that's it.

I'm 9 days into sobriety and only beginning to feel the effects you mentioned. Any encouragement you can offer me?
Posted: March 17, 2015, 6:10 PM

This is my last day of smoking....I've ruined my financial situation three times in my life by becoming depressed or overwhelmed and turning to staying stoned all day every day. I lost my job three weeks ago and been stoned ever since. I'm riding the bus to a meeting in the am. Please wish me luck...oh yea, I'm flushing it tonight at midnight.
Posted: March 18, 2015, 12:04 PM

Best of luck :)
Posted: April 22, 2015, 6:32 PM

Posts: 14
Joined: January 28, 2015

Hi again, it's coming up to 6 months since I quit. I feel perhaps 95% better; I can actually feel legitimately happy In life finally (just pretty much a better version of myself since the last update).

I am not really able to regularly reply but I'll try to check monthly for questions:

Regarding your questions Bobby, I can say that in the timespan close to when I quit, I smoked all day, every day for a week (this happened a couple of times). Unfortunately for me I have friends that did it every day at the time. This is probably especially bad because I smoked more before I quit cold turkey rather than weaning myself off the stuff. For the rest of the year I had done it sometimes weekly and others times a small 'puree' every day (this would happen perhaps every couple of weeks). There is no doubt that I consumed a very large quantity because I always smoked pure and I attended many 'weed gatherings'.

I know it's late but for encouragement all I can say is stay focussed on the goal of quitting and follow my previous advice (don't think about relapsing). Also make sure you know that whatever you are feeling is most likely entirely due to weed so you don't start worrying that things are wrong with your brain because it is like getting over the flu; you feel terrible and it can feel like an eternity but you'll slowly pull through and get over it in the end. I hope this helps/encourages you! :D

P.S. I might do another update about strange things that I experienced after I quit If anyone is interested.

Posted: April 25, 2015, 5:21 PM

Yes I'm interested, every little helps. I'm slowly starting to zone back in now but still head foggy and basically just messed up still, its getting frustrating now, like will this bloody hurry up, I'm getting head aches and just my vision is whacked out its quite worrying. I mean how much stuff did I bloody smoke, I only wish now that I knew what I was doing to myself, oh well as long as I stay clean and sober and stick to it for life I wont have any more problems once healed.
Posted: April 25, 2015, 7:30 PM

Stay away from 'people places and things'....i had almost 23 years clean from pot and alcohol and thought i could still hang with th ex bf who smoked pot 24/ Seven....needless to say i relapsed..not on pot but alcohol but a drug is a drug is a date i have more than 4 years clean and of course the ex bf is history...but my sobriety cramped his 'style' so he was going to get rid of me anyway...
i love coming to this board and listening to stories of recovery
it helps keep me clean...thank you all and God bless
Posted: April 29, 2015, 4:28 PM

Posts: 14
Joined: January 28, 2015

My strange phenomenon after quitting:

1) Derealisation - perhaps the most common, most irritating problem for me (I still have some fuzziness now).

2) Sleep trouble - things like insomnia, sleep paralysis, vivid dreams and recurring dreams where I would smoke weed again and I'd be like 'why did I do it again? Why'd I relapse?'even though I was perfectly clean in real life. I could go on and on about the sleep issues.

3) Fluctuations in anxiety - at first you feel terrible 24/7, then you start getting breaks in the anxiety and you can feel temporarily stable every so often. It started off in small helpings and then I would eventually get nearly whole days where I would be stable only to drop low again. Each time I went back into 'anxiety mode' I would feel a little less s*** until the point now where if I do drop low I don't feel awful, and I actually need a trigger to feel bad, rather than just my own existence causing it.

4) Alternative view on life - after overcoming the worst of anxiety or other deeply troubling emotional issues, you may have a new found appreciation for life. This for me hasn't exactly made me really motivated or ridiculously inspired but it has made me feel that bit better because I feel more accepting of anything in the world.

These issues are all mainly not a problem now; I sleep fine, feel ok, and my derealisation is much better nowadays. Anyway, hopefully some of that was interesting :)
Posted: November 29, 2015, 8:57 AM

Posts: 1
Joined: November 29, 2015

Well I'm definitely inspired by all of the stories I'm reading.
I'm a 35yr.old mother of 2,and Today I chose to kick the habit,
Although the decision was hard! I don't expect it to be easy,bc I've stopped before
Only to start again.... But I feel stronger this time. I will not GIVE UP...#Felldown7onlytoriseup8πŸ˜‡πŸ™ŒπŸΎπŸ‘πŸ½πŸ™πŸΎ
Posted: December 13, 2015, 12:27 PM

Posts: 2
Joined: December 13, 2015

It's good to know that am not alone, i am almost 4 months clean,i had smoked weed a year and some few months. a week ago i experienced some glimpse of normalism. but then came this night where i woke up in the middle of the night feeling pressure on the left side of my head. my anxiety has come back. its terrible, something triggered it some how, but finding this forum gives me hope knowing that i can only get better.

still strong,

never giving up.
Posted: December 15, 2015, 2:12 AM

Posts: 2
Joined: December 13, 2015

Today my anxiety is really bad, help guys how do u deal with it?
Posted: December 27, 2015, 12:27 PM

Posts: 20430
Joined: October 17, 2003

Aching ForYou,

We moved your post to Families/Partners of Addicts.

- the moderators
Posted: December 25, 2016, 3:34 PM

Does anyone still read or post here? There seems to be nothing in 2016. Is this a 'dead site"? I quit on Dec. 5, 2016. Today is the 25th and I feel so horrible I had to skip seeing my family for Xmas. Being alone sucks,but I couldn't submit them to such an irritable, depressed person (especially my 13 yr. old niece) on a holiday. Up to the 23rd, I thought things were getting better, then this sharp upswing in symptoms. I see from some of these old posts that this can last a long time. I am thinking of forcing myself to do some sort of exercise, as some old posts recommend this. Is anyone still out there?
Billy Bob
Posted: December 26, 2016, 6:35 AM

Hey Reva, I honestly think some of the posters on this topic are actually suffering from more than just marijuana withdrawal symptoms. Anything you experience a full 3 months after quitting is not a marijuana withdrawal symptom, period. I suppose in a very rare case where you have an incredibly heavy user of very high grade marijuana, its remotely possible that that person could still be experiencing withdrawal 2 months after a cold turkey quit, but I honestly find that hard to believe. You probably want to know what makes me so eminently qualified to make these statements well ill tell you. I am a very heavy heavy user of high potency thc and I have been that way for almost 20 years. I have had to cold turkey quit about 4 or 5 times, it has gotten progressively worse as ive gotten older. The first few times I had to quit it was much easier than this time around despite the fact that I had roughly the same amount of thc in my system each time. The physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms last about 3 weeks TOPS.
If you have any sort of symptom past the 1 month point, you honestlly should seek medical assistance because thats not weed. That being said, the first week is absolute hell, especially if you have access to marijuana and nothing to put a hard barrier between you and a smoke session. I will list the hard physical effects that you can expect with a cold turkey quit;

1. Passing lightheadedness. You will get these strange feelings that last about 30 mins or so where you feel really hyperactive and slightly lightheaded, these feelings are not particularly pleasant and I know of no way to make them go away (even smoking will not stop them immediately strangely enough). Anxiety almost always accompanies these symptoms. I would also say this symptom feels a little like actually being high, though certainly not in a good way.

2. loss of appetite and nausea. this one speaks for itself, you will only be able to eat a fraction of what you normally consume, not only that but the act of eating itself will cause you nausea, and you will only be able to finish about the first half of your meal before the nausea sets in if you are lucky, Try to resist the urge to vomit, because you arnt actually sick and you need to hold down as much food as you can since you will pretty much be starving yourself for that first week and not eating enough will directly contribute to and exacerbate all psychological symptoms associated with quitting so force yourself to eat. Oh and not to mention low blood sugar will definitely make symptom # 1 a lot worse.

3. Anger and anxiety. I have personally experienced and read about and seen in others the fits of rage that can be caused within the first week of withdrawal symptoms and this is really not an exageration, I am speaking from the viewpoint of an extreme heavy lifelong user so if you dont have this symptom that bad, lucky you. But it is possible to have extreme fits of rage that are so bad that they will basically take you outside of yourself and make you do things you would never normally do. They are passing and generally only last a few hours or so, but they are emotionally devastating to deal with afterwards because they literally turn you into a crazy person and you feel absolutely horrible when they are over, like your soul has died, these experiences help me to have motivation to quit so I dont have to go through it again. And one more time for anyone who might have missed it in the begginning of my post; im talking about weed, marijuana, yes the withdrawal symptoms are real. So watchout for flashes of extreme rage, they arnt the real you, and when you come down off that plateau of hell youll understand completely what I am talking about.

4. Sleep symptoms; You will have trouble sleeping, but not horribly so, even on my first night quitting I am still able to sleep at least 4 hours or so. Its not really insomnia you have to worry about, its strange dreams and sweating all night in your sleep. What I imagine is happening when you have a lot of thc in your system is that it dampens your mind and slows it down because whenever I quit, I become hyperactive and hypersocial, and then my dreams go haywire, because my mind wont slow down even while sleeping, this is just my theory, but what is fact is that when you quit marijuana cold turkey, you will have very vivid and creative dreams vastly different and unlike what you are used to, also you will sweat the entire time you are in REM sleep, so be prepared to wake up drenched for the next 6-15 days depending on how much thc is in your system and how heavy of user you are

Those are the big 4 that you can expect during your first week. You may have other symptoms during that time period, but those 4 are the most common and ALWAYS occur for me every time I cold turkey quit. Your second and third weeks are simply going to be week 1 light. By the 4th week the big 4 should be pretty much gone, if they arnt, consider seeking medical attention.
Posted: December 30, 2016, 10:40 AM

Posts: 529
Joined: October 15, 2016

i smoked weed/hash for years then stopped without any visible problems then picked up again and been smoking off and on now for 20 years..sometimes i go without for few years or months and months then i buy some and smoke for few weeks.. never had paranoia or any bad experience but i do know few who had serious mental issues they got through smoking skank , those chemicals they spry on weed are just plain dangerous. One thing you shouldn't let happen is letting weed taking over your life , very sad when you see young person locking the in house and do nothing but smoke weed and eat
Posted: January 5, 2017, 10:17 PM

Paranoia, paranoia, paranoia, confused reality, procrastination, I av been a year clean now, but it still goes on, but getting better tho or maybe just becoming more experienced, my advice to myself - 'stay alive'
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