I feel like a completely different person and I don't like it. Am i going crazy?
Am i going crazy?
I'm 16 years old and i've been smoking dope since about April 2011. At first, and of course it was always fun, they told me that "You can't die from smoking weed. It's safer than alcohol." I know this is to some extent true but lately my personality has gone downhill. Whenever i smoked, i would experience a bad case of shakes, I could not remember much and I was paranoid as all hell. I feel like cannabis has locked me in some kind of mental room where the only boundaries I can think outside of are the ones where cannabis exists.
Just the other night, even though i was not under the influence of anything but tobacco, I went to order some chips from KFC and i was told I had a large nose by the manager. I skitzed it at the cashier who was my friend and then jumped the counter to confront the person offending me. Violence was not in mind but I was deeply offended by what she said. I was pushed back by one of the workers thankfully and I left the restaurant with the friend I was smoking with. This was captured on film and there is a chance they may be pressing charges.
I honestly did not mean for it to get out of hand, i'm not a violent person. I once was a typical nerd, always talking about computers and other technological contraptions (even though I could balance a social life) and now i can't seem to recall much of it. I still have all my friends and have recently taken up smoking tobacco. How long could it be until I completely eradicate the remnants of my "smart life?" I feel like a completely different person now and I don't like it. I have contemplated requesting a school counsellor, but haven't because I strongly believe I can still stay sane. Any tips?
Thanks for your question. Life gets really complicated, doesn't it?!
A couple of facts first:
1. Smoking weed/cannabis is NOT safer than drinking alcohol because people can and do die from it. No, not from the cannabis itself, but from cancers and all the other illnesses you can get from smoke. It isn't the nicotine in regular cigarettes that causes disease, it's the by-products that you get when you burn plants.
Cannabis has just as many cancer causing chemicals as tobacco. Tobacco added to cannabis makes the cannabis more addictive, activates the compounds that cause cancer and increases the chances of mental problems.
2. Unless you have been smoking heavily for years, the damage that cannabis does to your memory and concentration will reverse when you stop using. Same with the physical problems: the shakes you are getting are probably due to the way that your brain's dopamine levels are boosted by cannabis. It's the same thing that causes your paranoia, and the way you lost control.
If you stop smoking, all that will fade away and your old interests and abilities should come back to you. But unlike alcohol, where quitting gets you back on track within a week or so, it might take a few months before you are back to your normal self. And even the occasional smoke during that time tops up the THC stores in your tissues and stops the recovery process.
The fact that you can probably stay sane isn't a good reason to avoid seeing a school counsellor. Their job is to support you and give you a bit of guidance. They can put you in touch with people to make your recovery quicker, so you can take over running your life again sooner and stay on top of it. Asking to see one is a good idea.
All the best.