Synthetic Weed
Josh
Posted: July 24, 2012, 2:02 PM







Concerned Sister,

The sad truth is she will probably have to hit rock bottom before she will realize how bad her life has become, at least I did. Right now shes in the denial phase, as I was. I had thoroughly convinced myself that I was smoking only to be more creative, to be able to write my novel in a flurry of stoned happiness... I'm sure you can guess how that books coming along after two years of drug abuse. (don't bother looking for it on the New York Times best seller list if you catch my drift, I wrote half a page of scribble the entire time, then just got high and did NOTHING. )

The more I read posts on this forum it seems like the hardest part of quitting and recovering is completely seeing the drug for what it is. Now that I'm sober I see that my relationship with this drug is a direct analogy to an abusive relationship between couples. No matter how badly the drug damaged me, I would defend it vehemently against anyone who had a bad thing to say about my use. I would lie for it, cover for it, all with the attitude of "you just don't understand what it's like when we're together."

And no, I was never abused or anything like that, but he analogy just fit too well not to use.

Your Sister will have to experience that moment of clarity before she can climb out. I don't know what symptoms fibromyalgia has but perhaps if you show her the symtoms myself, Hailey and countless others have had when using this stuff maybe she will see the light.

Eventually she will hit bottom and as bad as it sounds that's a good thing. I just hope for her sake she experiences it in her trash strewn house like I did and not in a jail cell. It's coming folks, read the news...

Bath Salts and the infamous "face eaters" have put a microscope on these designer drugs, and to news media, legislators and law enforcement they are all the same. Laws are being pushed right now state by state and there is a public outcry to get this stuff off the streets. Drug tests are already out that can detect its use.

Anyone who's using for the Love of God see that your on the edge... What was once "legal and untraceable" is now illegal and very traceable. They will make an example of people, it's how the system works. STOP NOW!!

Sorry to sound paranoid and "negative nelly", but it's coming folks. Re-reading this post I know I sound condescending, hypocritical and mean but it's the truth and you may not know how fast legislation is being pushed to squash this stuff. I think part of my moment of clarity was realizing that YES just possessing this stuff will get me sent immediately to jail and I had been unknowingly skating on very thin ice. I could have lost my daughters, my wife, my career, my freedom, my life all just to "get high".

Again, sorry, as you can tell from my tone I'm still a bit disgusted with my past self.

I'm hopping off for now, sorry to sound negative I promise my next post will be positive and helpful. I just wanted you all to know that if law enforcement finds this drug on your person they aren't just going to shrug their shoulders because it says potpourri. They know exactly what it is, what it does, and likely assume it's just as bad as bath salts.

Stop while your ahead!!!



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Josh
Posted: July 25, 2012, 1:00 AM







And yet another day clean!!

I'm trying to remind myself that every day clean is a major accomplishment. As some of you may be able to tell with my tone however, that "rainbows and butterflies" feeling I assume we all get from new recovery is fading as I piece my life together.

I've been very self destructive the past two years, it's impossible to "clean it all up" in a week. Credit cards bills, debts, broken relationships, all of this takes serious work to make good again. One day at a time...

I'm also going into "phase II" of my recovery... You see, Im also fighting ANOTHER addiction, one that tied in directly with my previous drug use. I now realize that I've also been addicted to Internet porn too. I've always known it and just dismissed it as "oh every guy does it".

Maybe there's a grain of truth in that, but not like me. I have hard drives FULL of porn, hidden all over the house. I don't even know where they all are I've hidden them so well. But worst of all during my downward spiral I went full-on porn CRAZY when I was on this drug. I quite literally would pleasure myself into exhaustion when I was high on this stuff, wake up all groggy, see porn on the screen, use again then continue this cycle until I HAD to go to work. Sometimes it was so bad during this two year period I would even call in sick if I found a new "stash" of porn.

This drug and porn mix was an explosive cocktail of pure, absolute orgasmic bliss, so much that I would literally almost pass out from going at it too much. My heart rate would must have gotten to dangerously high levels, I remember feeling like my heart was going to explode, but I couldn't stop it felt so good...

I was like a lab rat, I had absolutely no control over myself. Reality was just a means to an end, I would only stay in reality long enough to fix any immanently bad problems, then I would quickly delve back into my self absorbed world of porn and drugs. In my own mind I was the Best of Charlie Sheen, with a house full of the worlds best pornstars.

The reality was that I was in a slum that should have been condemned, surviving off of the worst junk food known to man and somehow barely surviving.

WTF I was really, really messed up.

It's one thing to know this, it's another to actually say it to people, even anonymously over the Internet. Even in my mind it didn't sound that bad, but when I Actually write it down for the world to see, to invite you all into that terrible chapter of my life... My God I was messed up.

If any of you are fighting the "porn monster" with this stuff, the good news is that when I finally kicked the withdrawals I dont have NEARLY the desire to watch porn like I did. In fact I hardly do at all, but the triggers...

Even seeing my home page triggers me, my brain automatically says "it's time, Go Go GO!!!"

I have self control now, but the autonomous desire to still view porn as an escape, a "decompressor" for the days stressors is there.

Looks like I've got another mountain to climb.

One day at a time.... One day at a time....

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Josh
Posted: July 25, 2012, 1:26 AM







I'm also afraid about trying to "correct" too much too fast... But at the same time I can't just keep using porn, I'm afraid I would just relapse all of my previous addictions to both into just porn... I don't know, turning me into a sober porn addict. Not what I want to be either.

I've tried to help out others on this forum, but at the moment I could use some support and prayers. Help! I need help!


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Posted: July 25, 2012, 2:43 AM


Posts: 16
Joined: July 23, 2012



Josh are you going to therapy or any kind of rehab treatment other than using this forum? If not, I think that would be a positive step to take because a counselor (especially an addiction counselor) would be able to advise you on these concerns you're having. I'm not an expert but you probably need to make choices that will take you away from your triggers.

You don't have to feel bad about yourself. It is really good to be *aware* of how you were, but guilt will not help you. When my sister gets clean eventually, I want her to look back at her behavior (some of which is very awful) and be able to forgive herself. You could practice forgiving yourself also.

I have guilt in regards to my sister and I know also I have to let it go. I also look back at the past several months and see several moments where I was in severe denial about what my sister was doing, because some of the signs were obvious and either her anger when I would address these things to her, or my own unwillingness to acknowledge the truth kept me from doing anything sooner to protect my niece. I have to forgive myself just as I already forgive my sister.

I am really glad that there are drug tests now that can check for this stuff! My sister told me months ago (when she was in a phase of deciding only to do real marijuana) that the synthetic stuff was now *more* illegal to possess in kentucky where she lives than the real stuff. I don't really want her to be thrown in jail (because then it will make it harder for her to be able to get a job when she does get clean) but I am primarily thinking of the safety of my niece and want to make sure my sister cannot continue to have legal custody of her. If a drug test would ever be necessary (in case my sister puts up a fight about it) then by all means, I would want to bring on the drug test. I would even rather have her in jail than for her to have my niece at this point.
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Josh
Posted: July 25, 2012, 12:24 PM







Thank you so much Concerned Sister, for all your help and support.

No, at this time I'm not seeing a therapist or counsellor, and as much as I know it would help oddly my career stands greatly in the way of that. I would prefer not to go into anymore details into the "why" for the sake of anonymity.

Thank you again for the kind words of encouragement, you are exactly right, last night I started beating myself up. Learning to forgive yourself is hard when you've done so much damage to the ones you love.

The Bible has been my rock, I didn't relapse or use (including porn) last night, just read the bible and held it to my chest while I cried myself to sleep.

I'm strong during the day, But the demons of addiction come out to play at night.... Especially porn. The more I think about it though, and as you said, I have to get past these triggers. Night time TV is filled with girls in skimpy clothes, which immediately triggers the porn addiction. It's all trash TV anyways so tonight the TV is going off after 8:00. Im reading a good novel right now, I'll just stick with that.

I'm also going to jump over to the Internet porn addiction forum and start writing there as well. I think being on these forums have helped me immensely. I will continue to write on this forum as well, as long as people are viewing it and seeking help or encouragement. I've beat this demon and will GLADLY help anyone who needs the encouragement to get through like I did.

I also hope that my posts here can serve as hope to the families like yourself, that Yes your family members CAN snap out of it, quit and see the err of their ways. But as you said Sister, there's no good in beating myself up over it, because in reality the last two years have been punishment enough. It's time to heal.

I hope that on my next birthday I can look back on this year and see that This was the definitive time I cleaned out ALL of the skeletons in my closet (figuratively of course) and grew up, finally becoming the responsible adult, husband and father I've wanted to be but didn't have the courage to be.

God bless and keep you all, I will continue to pray for you all. I am strong now.

Thank you again Sister for the words of encouragement.
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Josh
Posted: July 25, 2012, 10:02 PM







Extreme depression kicking in...

After Doing more research I see I've got a lot further to go through the recovery phase of this drug. Physical withdrawal symptoms are pretty much non existing now, but now I've hit the massive wave of mental/emotional withdrawal. Be prepared fellow recovering addicts, if your like me your mind is used to having a daily, sometimes hourly "pressure release valve" via drug use, and when it no longer is able to release all that stress at will... Well, you get very stressed.

I seriously don't mean to offend any females by saying this but I'm pretty much feeling like what I imagine PMS feels like. I'm depressed, overly emotional and subconsciously always taking things people say the wrong way. Very emotionally fragile right now, which is NEVER how I am normally.

Today has been the worst emotional roller coaster, and probably mostly all from my own imagination.

I haven't relapsed and won't, I know I need to just make it through a few more weeks and my brain/emotions should level out back to normal. I can't wait to be normal again....
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Josh
Posted: July 26, 2012, 7:56 PM







No relapses, just going one day at a time...
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Posted: July 26, 2012, 11:09 PM


Posts: 16
Joined: July 23, 2012



keep it up! good work. :)
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Josh
Posted: July 26, 2012, 11:21 PM







Thanks Sister! :).

I'm not touching this stuff with a ten foot pole! Now I'm going to watch "The Grey"... Sober! Movies and books are SOOO much better that way!
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Posted: July 27, 2012, 2:19 AM


Posts: 1067
Joined: November 19, 2005



Good for you Josh,
That depression sucks big time. What helped me was keeping busy. Get around other people, exercise, do something to get yourself out of your head. Doing something takes the edge off because when were around others we don't focus on it like we would if were alone or doing the "usual". I am so proud of you.
Keep it up and keep posting.
Another thought I had was starting a journal and writing what your feeling. Read it after each week and see your progress. It does help to get the feelings on paper.
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Josh
Posted: July 27, 2012, 11:51 PM







Dawn4na,

Thank you so much for the encouraging words. I like to use this forum almost as my "recovery journal", as you said it can be very therapeutic, especially when I go back and see what all I went through. It's a great reminder as to why I shall never use again. It is also my hope that through my experiences others may also be able to heal. Without this forum I don't think I could have kicked the habit behind closed doors.

I've started on a project recently that's got me very busy which is great. I'm also extremely relieved that Its finally the weekend!!!!!

This work week was really tough, but also extremely productive. I got more done in 5 days than I did for months being high. I'm no longer playing catch up, I'm finally making some forward progress.

All of you have been Angels to me, helped me and many other anonymous users recover. I can't thank you enough for that. I also never really understood how bad drugs are in our society today, but after recovering from major addiction it seems very easy to spot someone in trouble.

If I go to wal Mart at odd hours of the night it almost seems like I'm the only one there NOT on something. It's sad really.

I also see that the decades long "war on drugs" as we know it is a complete failure. I won't write more on that, I don't want to violate any forum rules and get off topic into politics or anything.

It feels great to be clean!!!!
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Posted: July 28, 2012, 12:59 AM


Posts: 16
Joined: July 23, 2012



"I also never really understood how bad drugs are in our society today, but after recovering from major addiction it seems very easy to spot someone in trouble."

I agree... and addicts are so good hiding it also, it makes me wonder about people often, what they're going through, if they're well.

I know we're talking about synthetic weed in this forum, but having recovered myself from natural marijuana addiction, I also know that how marijuana use is portrayed in movies is false. I cannot imagine anyone smoking as much as cheech and chong or as they do in Pineapple Express or other pot movies and really having that much fun on it. No substance is that fun if you're needing to use it every day, all day. It just isn't. It's sad. This idea of pot as merely fun, giggly good times is a myth. Can it be that on occasion for some people? Sure, so can alcohol. But for a person using daily, who is addicted, it is not fun.
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Josh
Posted: July 28, 2012, 4:12 AM







Absolutely right on, Hollywood is still in the business of selling the idea that anything you do is even more fun when your high.

When I thought that I would smoke before a fun activity... Low and behold, I usually ended up on the couch with a snack, stoned and still in my pajamas without ever doing anything fun.

What's odd is that during my years of smoking I always thought non smokers were really missing out, that they would have more fun if they would try it.

Now having been there and back again, I was the one missing out. I always had to have an escape route handy, a way to duck out and get high if need be. I never wanted to commit to any big plans that would take me away from my secret stash.

It's amazing how demonically powerful a little bag of leaves can be.
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Josh
Posted: July 28, 2012, 4:15 AM







Oh, and I guess it goes without saying now but...

No relapses!!!

Just in case that wasn't obvious :)
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Posted: July 30, 2012, 12:04 AM


Posts: 16
Joined: July 23, 2012



Keep it up!
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Josh
Posted: July 30, 2012, 12:35 AM







So the work week felt SOOOO long...

But so did the weekend!! Seriously, this weekend felt like it was about four days long, it was great! Plenty of time to relax, do fun things outdoors, sleep in and clean up the house. I even laid out tomorrows clothes, made coffee (auto timer) for tomorrow morning and have breakfast prepared. Life is getting back to good... It's the little things that we often neglect when we are high that slowly degrades us I think. Fishing out clothes out of the hamper, having a red bull for breakfast... It wears on ones psyche.

Oh, I even found an upside to the terrible withdrawal phase that is thankfully behind me... Those darned "love handles" and padding on my belly are gone! I'm not emaciated like I lost tons of weight, just that "winter coat" that we could all bear to lose. Nice timing too, it's beach season!!!!

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Posted: July 30, 2012, 1:23 PM


Posts: 16
Joined: July 23, 2012



Does this stuff make you not want to eat at all? My sister had lost 30 pounds and said by her own admission she basically wasn't eating (which of course she blamed on the fibromyalgia), but her best friend came to talk to me about her concern and said that not only was she mostly not eating, but if she ate it was something sweet and junky like ho ho's and cake.

Is this from the synthetic weed? Like I said, I'm almost positive that with my sister there is Rx pill abuse as well so not sure what is what.

She is right now doing a good job of convincing my aunt that she's "okay." But my niece's father called me yesterday and was telling me he was also concerned and wants to get custody, so I feel much more hopeful after that. I told him everything I saw from this last visit and he also had seen her behavior when he was living there for a short time a few months ago.

I would take custody of my niece myself but I don't think my sister would agree to that. At least the father has a good chance in court, especially if other people are willing to testify to how unfit a parent my sister is.

My aunt did at least realize the severity of things enough to call CPS on my sister this past week. My aunt said my sister is very mad/sad at *me* because of this. She is blaming me, even though my aunt said to her, "Well actually I'm the one who called them, though some things had been brought to my attention."

The social services people are going to have my sister do a drug test, which obviously is not going to work. I'm thinking of calling them myself to make them realize they need to do a test specifically for the synthetic weed (which they do now make) but bureaucracy what it is, I'm not sure if they do those or not or if they would be willing or even able to. In the meantime I'm praying at least she has some real marijuana in her system that gets picked up on the test!

It's kind of sad that at the moment I can't even be concerned with my sister getting clean. It's 1.) make sure niece is safely out of sister's custody and then 2.) think about sister's sobriety.

I think that in order for my sister to stop using synthetic weed it would have to be absolutely impossible for her to get it. That doesn't seem likely in the near future. Also since she seems to be adding other drugs to the mix, even if she had no access to her primary drug of choice, she's already abusing others to fill in the gaps and these are easy to get (have doctor make a prescription, go fill prescription!).

I want to remain optimistic. It's nice to see people on this forum being cognizant of how badly their addictions are and realizing it's something they need to stop. Even when you do realize it, the road is rough, but my sister doesn't even have the realization.

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Josh
Posted: July 30, 2012, 7:29 PM







Concerned Sister,

Noooooo... When I was using this stuff I had an insatiable appetite, just like real weed. I would eat junk food of course, but that was out of laziness. If someone would have served me up a steak or a salad I would have scarfed it down and asked for seconds. I remember binge eating on this stuff so bad that I would seriously be concerned that I might tear my stomach lining.

If she's not eating or barely eating either shes having a completely different reaction than I did or there's something else going on...

Could she be trying to quit on her own? It doesn't sound that way but I'm still having trouble eating a "normal" amount of food. I absolutely can't eat breakfast, I get nauseous if I try... :(
I tried eating breakfast this morning but there seems to be a knot in my stomach that doesn't go away until lunch time.

At lunch I can only eat a small meal, but luckily I can still eat a good dinner. I'm almost 100% positive stress is what prevents me from eating well. The more calm and relaxed I feel the more my appetite comes back.

If she's not trying to quit on her own than she may be using other drugs that stops her appetite. I'm sorry to hear that she hasn't seen the pit she's dug herself into, perhaps she cross-addicted into something else. Keep us informed!
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Josh
Posted: July 30, 2012, 7:30 PM







Or maybe it is fibromyalgia? Hard to say...
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Josh
Posted: July 30, 2012, 7:56 PM







So today was ROUGH.....

Withdrawal symptoms are not gone, but this is mental now. I get stressed really easy now. I woke up stressed, turned on the news and tried to eat breakfast... I almost threw up. I truly feel as stressed as I did during finals week in College, except today was a very mellow work day. Never even had to say a word to my boss all day. But by the time lunch came around I was at the end of my rope. Then it happened...

I had my first craving for it. Don't worry, I did not relapse, I WILL NOT go through this ever again, but as sure as the sun was shining I had a very strong urge to use. It wasn't a desire to get high, it was a "need" to decompress, to get the boot off my chest that wasn't letting me breathe.

Luckily I've severely separated myself from accessing this stuff and I wouldn't even if I did. But man, today just sucked. I know in all reality it was just a normal Monday, but for some reason it felt like the weight of the world was on my shoulders.

Luckily (maybe) I found a way to destress without using drugs. The first thing I had to do was stop watching the news. Man the news is just DEPRESSING!!!

Second thing I did was watch comedy central. Aaaahhh.... Laughter can be the best medicine. But can even that go too far? Let me explain...

At my lunch break I sat down with a bowl of chicken noodle soup (still a bit queasy at this point so that's why the selection) then turned on the news, only to be bombarded by the worlds problems. The knot in my stomach tightened... I stood up autonomously... And I noticed I was staring at the door to my garage. FYI, this is where I would always go to smoke. Uh oh.....

The oddest thing was, my mind/body just DID it. There was no conscious thought. Luckily every last tiny bit, including pipes and paraphernalia have been completely disposed of, but damn that was a shock to my psyche. I thought I had destroyed all cravings for this stuff.

I had a glass of water mixed with crystal light (just beverage mix folks, non alcoholic, non narcotic) for lunch too, but as I mixed it my subconscious actually considered pouring a little vodka in there to "take the edge off"...

WTF!?!?!? Ive NEVER been a drinker and I hate vodka, I guess my brain was just screaming out for an escape.

So what did I do? I turned on comedy central. Then I started laughing. A lot. Out loud. By myself. It was so odd I was almost making myself uncomfortable, because it really wasn't that funny. I think I just desperately needed something, ANYtHiNG to distract me from reality. When my brain finally found its release (comedy, laughter) it just binged on it. I escaped reality for a short while just laughing at semi-funny TV.

So while that's much, much healthier than drugs or alcohol, I still need an escape from reality. I always have, I think, even when I was a little boy.

Am I an escapist? Will I always run to something when the fuze is about to bust? Or is this just "normal people" behavior? I don't know I haven't been one for so long...

So no, I didn't relapse and I won't. But I do seek escapes through books and TV. Dare I say, I NEED these escapes?

Uuughh... I hate Monday's.
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