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I am a member who is too cowardly to own up to her maryjane addiction.

I self medicate with pot as an anit-anxiety med and it works perfectly ONLY if I can control the amount I smoke.

I have tried for YEARS and YEARS and I still have not succeeded. My first toke was in the field near my house the summer before my freshman year at college with a boy who was a friend.

Now, many many many years later, my habit is basically this:

I smoke only with one particular friend.

Sometimes he gives me a very small amount (smallish bud) of pot and I give him a very small amount of the benzo I am prescribed by my pdoc.

It really really seems to help with some parts of my life.

At the same time I KNOW I have to be in control and on top of and really really honest with my self about my addiction.

Has anyone here ever done a harm reduction model with pot?

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The harm reduction model is based on the idea that by adhering to one course of action, i.e. "never do drugs ever" and prescribing that for every single person, you become unable to help people for whom that is not an option for whatever reason.

Therefore, you meet the person where they are and try to reduce any possible harm they may do to themselves.

Needle exchanges are an example of a harm-reduction based approach to IV drug use. Abstinence-only sex education is the opposite of harm-reduction.

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Harm reduction? Like: use a roach clip so you don't get burned? Wear finger cots to avoid paper cuts? ;)

** If you believe that pot is negatively influencing your life, then you do have a problem.

Seriously, I think harm reduction as described is a concept used at the public health level.

However, one way to reduce the potential for harm (and using) would be to cut off relations with your source, or at least stop seeing him at the places you smoke. Don't carry meds to trade (which is illegal).

Attend some Narcotics Anonymous or AA meetings, or other 12 step program. Gaining some insight to what drives your addiction and how others have struggled and succeeded may be inspirational.

Personally, I think it is better to be clean and clear headed in order to better deal with your MI issues.

Best, a.m. :)

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Harm reduction is not only used at the public health level. It is a specific therapeutic approach, which (while abstinence may be the primary eventual goal) a person's drug use is reduced or changed in small graded steps over time to minimize the harm it does in their life.

For example, someone who drinks ETOH might first start looking at ways to avoid drinking and driving, rather than reducing their alcohol intake, leading to less overall possible "harm" in their overall drug or alcohol usage.

It can have some efficacy with clients who are not at a point where they are willing to look at abstinence, it can have some overall positive effects in moving people forward motivationally, etc.

It was all the rage back when I was in SW school, and it's certainly still used therapeutically in some cases. If overall damage of drugs can be reduced on a personal OR public policy level, that's probably a good thing.

I'm not sure how the OP, specifically, would use the harm reduction model in his or her specific case, however.... lengthening episodes between smoking pot? Not trading away ones benzos? Trying to find that "optimal" level of use (hasn't been so successful, so far)?

If the OP wants to use the harm reduction approach I suppose the useful thing to do would be to find a therapist who specializes in that approach and work with them, potentially. They're out there.

Anna

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I am a member who is too cowardly to own up to her maryjane addiction.

I self medicate with pot as an anit-anxiety med and it works perfectly ONLY if I can control the amount I smoke.

I have tried for YEARS and YEARS and I still have not succeeded. My first toke was in the field near my house the summer before my freshman year at college with a boy who was a friend.

Now, many many many years later, my habit is basically this:

I smoke only with one particular friend.

Sometimes he gives me a very small amount (smallish bud) of pot and I give him a very small amount of the benzo I am prescribed by my pdoc.

It really really seems to help with some parts of my life.

At the same time I KNOW I have to be in control and on top of and really really honest with my self about my addiction.

Has anyone here ever done a harm reduction model with pot?

I'm in the same boat at the moment, or similar. I've smoked on and off for fourteen years. I currently only smoke an hour or so before bed to sleep, sticking to benzos during the day to control my anxiety. I periodically convince myself to stop for a while when my cyclical thinking leads me to believe that the pot is primarily responsible for my lack of motivation, lethargy and poor short term memory, all of which, of course, can be due to pot.

However, each time I've stopped, be it three months, six months, or one year, I find little to no improvement in any of these areas, and a huge spike in anxiety and coping skills in general. So...I really don't know how much the pot does negatively impact my life. When I've stopped it usually coincides with hitting a real low point, feeling worthless and useless, that leads me back into the world of med cocktails and therapy. When that course of action leads to me feeling worse and worse, and when I reach the serious suicidal thoughts, I drop everything but the benzos and go back to the pot at night. For a while, I feel much better. Then the worthless/useless feelings come back and the cycle starts over. I've also tried dropping all meds and using pot only, but that led to me smoking during the day, and then I really wouldn't do a damn thing with my life.

I would like to stop, or at least cut back to smoking occasionally, once a week or less, and it sounds like you feel the same. I wish I could tell you how to find that middle ground.

FWIW, despite knowing that stopping usage doesn't change anything for the better for me, I've decided to give it another go. I'm going to start school again soon and try a kind of therapy more specific to my conditions, and I just yesterday began taking luvox after going a year off of antidepressants. I want to give the meds and therapy a chance one more time. Not because I actually think it will work this time, but because what I'm doing now isn't working, and I'm out of ideas yet again.

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  • 2 months later...

I am still having a problem. I want to write this now while I am stoned so I remember. I want to get some more next week and I KNOW it is not a good idea.

I'm not saying that I want to cut it out of my life entirely. I can think of two times a year I would want some. Otherwise, if it is around, then fine. I don't want to buy any.

So there.

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I'm not saying that I want to cut it out of my life entirely. I can think of two times a year I would want some. Otherwise, if it is around, then fine. I don't want to buy any.

So there.

If that's the case - only hitting the weed when it's available and you're so stressed out that you can't think of any better way to cope - it sounds more a personal warning sign than an addiction or habit (and everyone's right to be worried, whether it's once a week or once a year)

How about working out a deal with your friend that after smoking that one or two times a year, he gets to nag at you until you go see your doctor for a med adjustment?

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Yeah, don't trade with Benzos. Sure, it's illegal. But more importantly, since he/she is doing pills, it's possible that they are doing other pills as well which could create a dangerous combo. You have no real way of knowing.

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You have no real way of knowing.

I do know what pills he is taking. He is very careful. He did ask for his own prescription but I think did not press it with the doctor. Because we traded today I did not buy any which I'm sure I would have. This way I have only a very small amount and it is controlled. I've tried and tried and tried to regulate pot when I have it at home but I just cannot.

At that same time it helps my anxiety and if overused adds to my depression. My friend has always suggested I buy some and just leave it at his house but I can't do that either.

I with I could buy a joint at CVS once every couple of weeks. This would be the perfect amount for me.

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I am a member who is too cowardly to own up to her maryjane addiction.

I self medicate with pot as an anit-anxiety med and it works perfectly ONLY if I can control the amount I smoke.

I have tried for YEARS and YEARS and I still have not succeeded. My first toke was in the field near my house the summer before my freshman year at college with a boy who was a friend.

Now, many many many years later, my habit is basically this:

I smoke only with one particular friend.

Sometimes he gives me a very small amount (smallish bud) of pot and I give him a very small amount of the benzo I am prescribed by my pdoc.

Has anyone here ever done a harm reduction model with pot?

I have a very different take on this subject. I speak as a bipolar 1 person who is over 50, and who smoked dope more than 30 years ago. Pot is not as harmless as people like to pretend. I do not know what your diagnosis are because you are signed in as Guest. However I believe it is very dangerous for the young bipolar mind and can induce paranoia and psychosis.

You need help to stop smoking dope. I suggest you try NA or some other program where you will have support. You trade benzos for pot. This means a doctor gives you the benzos. What about asking your doctor how your pot habit is affecting you? oh you don't want to , do you? How often do you smoke? The fact that you have brought up the subject means you are ready to consider stopping your marijuana use or greatly reducing it. Reducing it to once a week or less. I encourage you to take steps for your own wellbeing. Make choices that will help your brain. You will be glad that you did.

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  • 6 months later...

What about asking your doctor how your pot habit is affecting you? oh you don't want to , do you?

BTW: I was very offended by this. I did talk to my doctor and I did want to.

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