anonymous Asks ...
I am a long time marijuana smoker. 14 years to be exact. My live revolved around getting high with friends and just getting by at work. I realized eventually that I was sleepwalking through my life and that the way I thought of weed as a fun and social activity was mostly now a not very fun thing I needed to do to feel like myself (it was still sometimes fun but not most of the time) and rarely a social thing. It had more become a thing that kept me from socializing with other people since as I aged into my 30s it became less Ok to be high in front of more and more people. It became something that had kept me from social events so I could stay home and play video games by myself or with one other friend. A few months ago I decided to quit but I failed. Fast forward a few months and a few more failed attempts and I realize that stopping is much harder than I ever thought it would be. I don’t really have any withdrawal but after 2 days I just crave it so strong and I can’t get it out of my head. I have never made it past 4 days. If I went away for 1 week of rehab would that be enough to get past the cravings? I feel ridiculous for even asking about rehab for marijuana but I do not know what to do.
Zelik Mintz Says ...
Only a very small percentage of people develop a physical dependence to marijuana. Psychological dependence is quite frequent with long term heavy use. What you describe sounds like you’ve become dependent on functioning in your life being high. Even after using becomes an impediment to socializing – often one starts to feel some paranoia with long time use – it is very difficult to stop. Because you have been smoking for 14 years, life sober might feel bland and empty or bring on anxiety. A week in rehab will not be sufficient to deal with the feelings that led to heavy use for so long or whatever anxiety – social or otherwise – marijuana helped mask. A week in rehab might give you a start but you will need a lot of daily support in order to prevent using and sustain sobriety. Seeing a psychotherapist would also be very advantageous to deal with what led to such long heavy use. Addiction to marijuana is common and there are groups such as Marijuana Anonymous that you could find and would be very helpful. Addiction issues are not only for substances that are physically addictive. Psychological addiction is actually harder to deal with because of the problems or issues that smoking marijuana masked. It is very difficult to quit after being so much a part of your life but I commend you for recognizing your problem and wanting to deal with it. Rehab for marijuana is not ridiculous and is common. I hope you can find the support you need and achieve your goal of dealing with your dependency.