cmv: if you smoke weed daily and fail to stop you have a drug addiction.

Wow, a CMV topic that actually directly relates to my life! Here's the path I went on:

  1. Living life as a 'normal person,' not knowing that I have undiagnosed ADHD and ASD. I manage to get steady work but only because I work in the field I was obsessed with as a child - video games (oops! Another addiction!)
  2. Career and relationships are taking their toll as I take on more and more responsibilities. Develop a drinking habit, going through big-ol tumbler glasses of red wine on a daily basis. Weight gain and frequent hangovers become part of my life.
  3. I try weed for the first time, don't really like it, it makes me feel loopy. Return to drinking.
  4. Total life collapse - divorce, estrange self from friends, live entirely for work and World of Warcraft. Probably my lowest point in life.
  5. Start to bring things back together, dating again, getting some friends. Nearly collapse again and seek professional help; diagnosed with depression and social anxiety.
  6. Prescribed antidepressants, which help but (for me) don't interact well with alcohol. Weed is legalized in my state (WA) so I give that another shot.
  7. Weed + antidepressants is a nice combo, start getting really into things again. Return of 'passion' in my life. Career improves, start meditating regularly, get married.
  8. Weed use has become constant. It was daily, then multiple-times-daily, then keep-my-battery-in-my-pocket-at-all-times. Even my most generous take on this is dependency, but I would not argue against the idea that I was addicted. Weed had less and less of an effect, and I could on longer get 'high.' I only smoked to 'feel better.' Career + marriage going ok, but passion for life is fading.
  9. COVID, lockdown, near-mental collapse as my environment is becoming too much for me to handle
  10. Diagnosed with ADHD (P.S. holy shit the public health side of this is atrocious) and low-grade ASD. Start medication for ADHD and learn coping mechanisms for both. Life improves, I have more energy, but still imperfect.
  11. Decide to quit weed, it's getting expensive and lately it's been making me sleepy. Wean myself off and quit for an extended period. Now on just antidepressant and ADHD meds. Things are... fine? ADHD meds give me energy and creative passion, but I can't seem to direct it. I'm all over the place. The stress of wanting to do everything at once, and not being able to because of life responsibilities, starts to get to me.
  12. After 4 months off weed, my ADHD meds have stabilized but I'm still feeling imperfect. I wean off antidepressant, no effect either way (positive or negative). Not sure what to do next, I talk w/ my wife about my relationship with pot, consider smoking again.
  13. Start pot again, but with a new, stricter regimen. I'm now 'microdosing,' taking very small hits from a vape. Daily journaling which includes pot consumption to monitor use. Use frequency is ~2 times a day; I try to plan the next 3-4hrs of my life before smoking. Ritual becomes: plan -> smoke -> meditate (15m) -> work on creative projects. Both meditation and creative energy are vastly improved, I feel like I can direct my mind in ways I couldn't before. Feels very similar to the burst of passion/drive I felt way back in step 7.
  14. Writing an overshare-y response to a CMV post. <---- you are here

So, according to your position, I am currently addicted to pot. It's a defensible position, but it's not one I agree with. I see pot as another kind of medication, in tandem with the prescribed medications I take daily. Here's my take:

  • I grant that no one has written me a medical prescription for cannabis. This means, in the eyes of society and the law, I am 'abusing' the drug.
    • While this could be because it has no medical benefit for me, I believe it's more likely that this is tied to weed's legal status in my country (UK now).
  • I grant that weed can be addictive, both physically and habitually. I have experienced this personally, and do not wish to return to this state.
  • I believe that it is possible to consume cannabis on a daily basis without labeling this consumption as 'addiction.'
    • I am using it to manage certain symptoms and difficulties, and with disciplined use I have been making great strides in writing, self-care, and self-improvement.
    • With daily journaling, open communication with my wife (my ever-patient sanity checker), and habit reinforcement techniques, I am putting a lot of effort into avoiding cannabis resistance/dependency.
    • I have a plan in place for detoxing myself if I start to show signs of dependency again. Essentially, I'll wean off (hopefully I won't let it get bad enough that I need to) and take a month+ break. This process will involve dialing back my ambition and projects to account for physical and emotional tolls this may take on my system.

So, that's one person's perspective... but it should be enough, given that your CMV was an "If/Then" statement of logic. I believe I am a counterexample to your statement, "If you smoke weed daily and fail to stop, you have a drug addiction."

And, uh, thanks for giving me the opportunity to reflexively overshare my life with the internet. If there's any addiction I need to quit, I think it might be reddit.

/r/changemyview Thread