Postby moneypowerrespect » Tue Apr 23, 2019 12:28 pm

Hi guys, my name is AJ.

Not many of you will recognise me or my account because i joined this forum 6 years ago in 2013 to put out a desperate plea for help to quit weed and gradually re-integrate myself back into society.

here's the link to my initial post

It's actually pretty painful for me to look back at the things i wrote during those times, it reminds me of how much pain i was in and how weed was ravaging through my life like a hurricane. I say that because i had no real defense against weed, i was emotionally vulnerable and weed can be detrimental to a person who's not happy/content inside already without it. Which (in my opinion) is why there are people who can smoke daily but still function normally - emotionally and physically. note that this is a very rare way of life though and generally smoking weed regularly can have deteriorating effects on most peoples minds and emotional balance eventually

I'd like to split this post into 2 parts if you don't mind. The first will deal with the gap in time since i last posted and now, Just incase there is anyone who has read my original posts from all those years ago and wonders what my journey has been since then.
Then we'll go into what my plans are now and what my current struggles are.

Part 1
Let me start then by saying that two months after the last post of my original thread i relapsed. Or i wouldn't necessarily call it a relapse. i purposefully planned to try to become a functioning pothead (which we all know is a bad idea if you've had problems in the past) i made it from January to December 2013 with pretty much no weed (i relapsed once in march i think) but by December my life was totally different. I had a lot more money, i was a much more confident person, i had friends, i felt good. I went back to my home town for Christmas and saw my old group of friends that i grew up with (all potheads) and smoked with them to celebrate Christmas.

as you'd expect that Christmas smoking session turned into smoking with other potheads at my work place after work by January 2014 and by April 2014 smoking in the morning before work and also after work. doing my best to still function as a normal employee, convincing myself that its a sustainable work life balance.

ok so lets fast forward to December 2014 - - for those of you who read my original thread you may remember that i had a ex girlfriend who was trying to worm her way back into my life and seduce me (using sex) and usher me back under her influence. Well it worked and even though she had left me for another man in 2012 (cancelling our marriage and literally throwing my engagement ring back at me) here i was marrying her on the 28th of December 2014.

I know, it sounds unthinkable, but i was young, 26, silly, lonely, I've always been a hopeless romantic, but when a hopeless romantic comes into contact with a wolf or predator the same ravaging can occur that happens when weed finds and emotionally broken young man.

So lets fast forward to may 2015 I'm kicked out of the house by my brand new wife after 4-5 months of marriage and living together. I still need to work but have no where nearby to live so have to go back home to live with my mother and commute 40 miles by car everyday to and from work. weed smoking is now before work, at lunch time and alot after work.

feelings of deep depression and suicidal thoughts start to arise, weed masks them but my spiral is quicker and very familiar this time.

fast forward to September 2015 i can't handle the breakup, my horrible high pressured sales job and the side effects pf weed and get diagnosed with clinical depression again, given a sick note by the doctor and begin taking sick leave. sick leave lasts 6 months during which i have found a new smoking den (my moms house). my work place are now pressuring me to either come back or just quit. so i quit and i'm back in the exact same position that was in 2013 when i was alone and smoking huge amounts knowing I should stop. Difference is i have a divorce to settle now.

So now were in march 2016 I've tried as many times as i possibly could to make things work out with my wife but it's totally hopeless and so I give up and decide to focus on myself a lot more now. I take a body mass index test and find out that i'm clinically obese. It turns out I've emotionally over eating for years.

This is where things start to change

phew...thought it would never come

So i sign up to a gym in my home town while i'm living with my mom and start exercising more, i take a blood test and find out that i have a yeast intolerance and it makes sense because i've been gorging on sweet sugary foods and cakes and bread or pastry based foods like pizza or pie. So i start a strict diet with alot more vegetables and anti-inflammatory foods.
I also importantly I take a myer-briggs personality test to find out my most suitable career paths, it indicates that being in a high pressured sales environment is draining for my personality type and should be avoided at all costs, which again made sense because that's exactly how it felt (probably how it feels for a lot of people apart from complete extroverts but i'm introverted) so it had gradually become quite soul destroying for me contributing to this relapse and slide into depression.

the myer-briggs test outputs a list of careers most suitable that i'd probably find satisfying, i need one that doesn't require a degree because i cant afford to do another degree, one that doesn't require acceptance to any kind of bar or society like lawyers or accountants and one that doesn't necessarily require huge amounts of experience to get into but is a stable long term career choice.

the stars begin to align
learn to code

i begin teaching myself to code using only information and tutorials on the internet, because i can't afford any kind of paid course. I begin researching the industry itself as deeply as possible.
i find that its filled with introverts who like to sit silently and figure out problems (like me),
it has a very strong future but the supply of coders in this country is low and so employers are paying large amounts for good coders and medium-fair amounts for inexperienced coders willing to learn (like me).
i find that the industry is versatile and you can work from anywhere in the world as a remote developer employed by any company in the world because its all base on the internet ( :roll: ).

as time passes i get further into this routine of working out, studying different coding languages all day then only smoking a small amount at night time.

That ends in September 2016 when i'm kicked out of my mothers house by her husband who has become more and more of an abusive person towards her and my younger sister over the years. I'm forced to go and live in an empty house owned by my mother with no electricity, no heating, no hot water and no furniture. that i would say was rock bottom for me.

i slept on the floor of the cold bedroom everyday. every morning i woke up early, exercised, washed with cold water and walked two miles to the library where i spent the whole day from 9am to 9pm i would then return to the house too tired to do anything else but sleep.
but at that point i had made the conscious decision to stop smoking. smoking had again ravaged too much of my life for me to continue doing it. Also i felt like i needed to be more clear minded in order to deal with my mother husband and my own impending divorce.

6 weeks pass and my mother and her husband invite me back to the house to live once family friends start to realise whats happening and begin to make them feel guilty, demanding that they treat me better and are more supportive. but i already have plans to deal with this man, who has gotten into the routine of screaming and shouting at my mother and sister over the years while i've been away being a mindless pot head. at this point i'm 6 weeks clean and feeling alot sharper from the exercising of my body and mind. About 2 stones of weight has dropped off because i'm too broke to afford decent food so i've been eating canned peas and very basic types of sustenance but making sure not to malnourished myself (extreme budgeting).

lets fast forward 1 month to october 2016 where i have gradually begun to standup to my mothers husband in defense of my mother and sister, this culminated in a scuffle between he and i, ending with my knee pressing the back of his head into the sofa cushion and my sister calling the police who can see that he is and has been the aggressor and have him leave the house immediately until the next day. That night my mother and sister and i pack our possessions and arrange to move back to my mothers old empty house (where i had been staying) the next morning. the moves goes swiftly and accurately thanks to my clear mindedness and foresight (not to be too cocky, just making the point that i couldn't have done any of this whilst smoking weed). the next day my mothers husband comes home to an empty house and files for divorce from my mother later that week.

To make it clear this was not a situation that i created which cost my mother her marriage, she had become trapped in an abusive relationship with an abusive man and had realised but didn't know how to escape. we all need help and assistance sometimes, I had just been too lost in my struggles with weed and depression to notice or even consider helping.

lets fast forward to march 2017 i receive my divorce petition and sign it immediately and return it. Its a clean break as I've had no income throughout the period of the marriage, so there'll be no spouse payments or anything like that. in fact if anything she would've been liable to split some of what she had made as a nurse with me during our marriage but i for went that in as dignified a way as possible.
At the same time as receiving the petition i find out that she has been with another man now for some months which is part of the reason why she's rushing the divorce through as quickly as possible. Its because she's been with another man whilst married to me all this time and was most likely embarrassed to be in such a scandalous position.

This news is quite stunning and hurtful for me but lets remember that i'm still clean of weed now 6months or so. Falling back on weed to deal with these strong emotions is not an option for me. I've feeling physically and mentally and emotionally stable since quitting it. I'm still studying daily and working out regularly. I have borrowed my mother around £2000 from my credit card to get her house hold up and running again, get the heat and electric turned back on, for the removal company, for food shopping etc etc.

my mother and i are now dealing with divorces simultaneously and begin drinking together regularly to deal with the emotions. At the time it seemed like the only option and a good way to open up dialogue between my mother and myself regarding feelings we could relate on right then. but of course it became unhealthy after a few months and i had to confront it.

fast forward to june 2017 and luckily my mother took us all on a holiday and paid all expenses to sort of solidify and conclude the period we were going through. As hard as it was the holiday worked as the last real emotional drinking that i did to put my marriage to rest. After returning home confronted the drinking and stopped it immediately and got back to my all important routine. of studying, conscious eating and exercising.

Fast forward to october 2017 and i land my first full time job as a web developer :lol:

upon receiving the phone call after the interview offering me the job I actually cried. That moment was like the relief of all those years of pain, embarrassment, heartbreak & struggle loaded into one moment, so i cried... i cried with happiness.

I had been offered the salary that i'd asked for, which was actually the equivalent of what i'd been earning in 2015 at the soul destroying sales call center. I had been so broke for so long that i'd forgotten what it felt like to have a steady income. I had thousands of pounds to pay off on my credit card which was becoming more and more imminent, I had worked so hard and planned so far ahead that at times it seemed like i was chasing a dead end with the whole coding thing but here i was about to start a real career in a real area that will support me forever where ever i go.

fast forward to NOW

It's been 2 & 1/2 years since i smoked weed. I haven't smoked cigarettes during that time either. I like to vape but even that i have now cut down to the lowest strength of nicotine concentration and might eventually stop that too. i have a drink now and then but am always aware of the idea that i mentioned earlier regarding using weed or any sedative including alcohol during emotional times. I only drink when i'm happy and times are good and never drink for days on end. I simply don't have the time. I have a thriving career that i thoroughly enjoy every single day, it matches my personality perfectly and makes me proud to have accomplished.

My ex wife broke up with her boyfriend again and tried to get back with me again, for those of you that have read my original thread you'll be rolling your eyes at that. (its the second time she's done exactly that. but i'm way too happy within myself and in my own life to allow her back into my life ever again now.

that was actually pretty exhausting putting that down here, getting it out, thats a good 5 years of drama that you just read if you've gotten this far.

and if you have gotten this far thank you sooooooooo much for listening to this. These are my life and times, i'm 30 years old now and i originally posted on uncommonforum at the age of 24, amazing that this website is still helping people. I felt it was my responsibility to give my story because i remember how much it helped me to read the story of others on this site when i first started out trying to quit.

i also remember being slightly worried about not spotting any long term quitters. i.e - people who have quit and stayed away from their sedative of choice for longer than 6months to a year.

so thankyou so much for following

Part 2

This section will be shorter :D

now that i turned 30 it has made me step back and look at how much of my 20's i lost to depression, weed abuse, bad relationships and wallowing on bad times. It really makes me want to just live as much as i can now for the rest of my life. my finances are alot more stable but at times i still feel pretty deeply scarred from the troubles i've had.

i find it hard to trust women and even to approach them, my self esteem and view of myself is low because of the ego hits i've taken from my ex wife, it seems to be taking longer than i expected for those wounds to heal totally.

I was never the most social person ever but i have now changed my social group and left all the friendship circles that were based on weed because its no longer of interest to me.So i need to find or create newer more healthy ones.

I feel like i'm at a place now where i have the task of building a social life from scratch. Part of me finds it exciting but also daunting and difficult because of my confidence issues.

it's funny because it comes full circle with the original thread being named
but instead i think this time around its more that

So if any of you have any suggestions on how to go about creating a new life for yourself with fresh new positive people please do let me know. I'd love to hear from you.
In the same way if anyone feels like they can relate or particularly moved by this post please give it a like or a comment. Thats what this place is for, share your thoughts and your story with me too

Thankyou to uncommon forum for providing this safe haven for those with difficulties, its amazing.

thankyou to all of the members who supported me during 2013 when i posted the original I WANT MY LIFE BACK thread.
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Postby Sherwood1999 » Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:53 pm

Wow man. Just wow. What an awesome story. I’m only 19 so I still have a lot to learn and experience but this story tells me that no matter how hard times will get there’s always a way to climb back outta that hole.

Currently 4 months and 20 days clean myself and working on a college degree. Hopefully I’ll be where you’re at someday.
Thanks for sharing your story.
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Postby cleanofgreen » Thu Apr 25, 2019 3:46 pm

Hey moneypowerrespect

Very inspiring story, it sure will help a lot of people long after you've forgotten about writing it here.
Thanks for sharing it.

Well done :D
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Postby moneypowerrespect » Thu May 30, 2019 6:00 pm

Thank you very much @cleanofgreen & @Sherwood1999

your praises mean a lot to me.

I just want all those reading this thread struggling in life to know that It gets easier.

I feel like I've been to hell and back now, I feel like i literally died and came back. I had to kill my old self or at least let it wither away and then i had to rebuild myself from the ground up.

So all in all - there's a life after death - a better life -

DO NOT give up,
You DO NOT need any kind of drug or stimulant,
There are billions of people who survive just fine without drugs and even find happiness, real happiness, much more happiness than we ever got from drugs even at our "highest" of times.
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Postby SparkleFly12 » Thu May 30, 2019 7:57 pm

Wow. Congrats, @moneypowerrespect. That is truly inspiring.

Your story aroused so many emotions in me because I feel we are similar in so many ways...but we are also different in so many ways. Weed never ruined my life - I was one of those "functioning" potheads and made it far in my career while being stoned 2-18Hrs a day. From the get go, I NEVER smoked (or drank) when I was sad: That is sort of a ground rule I follow, that has served me well to NOT numb my emotions and to force me to think through my problems - save for a couple of big ones (see next cpl paragraphs).

I too am an introvert, hate talking to people I dont know; it sucks the energy out of me. Im so glad you learned to code. Coding really provides a pathway for people like us; a path to focus our energy; and a path to make money. I dont code for a living, but my job relies on understanding code so all that time I spent learning to code (from the internet) was very useful.

I too had a major distrust of women. Im also 30 now. But in my 20s, I had a tendency to like girls that didnt like me. There were a couple in particular that I liked a LOT; spent my days thinking about; but she didnt reciprocate. But, she didnt make it clear to me she didn't at the time; so I was just left to keep chasing. We had spent so much time together - months of one0-on-one trips and daily excursions, and I thought she was into me. When I brought it up and found out she wasn't, I was I was really pissed; and of course depressed.

Thats when I really started smoking a lot; because there was really nothing I could do to get her to like me after all that time. I was an emotional wreck; and there was also the crazy fact that I had started rolling (ecstacy) every couple weeks (with friends at raves - unrelated to the relationships I was persuing) and that further f***ed up my emotions. (Never use ecatacy more than twice a year!!!!). I remember one time I woke up and just drove for 100 miles, crying the whole way because I didnt want to talk to anyone even my roommates. The ecstacy also caused more depression and made me smoke more; an ecstacy comedown is 100% pure depression (chemically speaking, it depletes your seratonin and has a dramatic effect on emotions) and smoking weed helped get through that too.

Eventually I got over her in a couple weeks but I had started a habit of smoking weed and kept smoking weed. Part of the pain was that I was 25 and still had not ever been in a happy relationship that I found wholesome. That was what I wanted most of all.

Fast forward a few years of smoking (still doign well in my career though) and I finally meet a girl that I like and it seems like she likes me. Well I soon started to notice a few things about me; mostly my lethargy, constant muscle aches, headaches, and most of all intermittent erectile dysfunction. I didnt want to believe it at the time, but now I know all these were caused by weed. I didnt believe thej physical side effects were from weed before I was in a long term relationship; and I didnt have the will to quit until I was in one. After a couple years of intermittent ED and realizing I couldnt mentally of or physically keep up with another person on weed, I finally decided to quit.

But now, 2 years into the relationship I am 3.5 months clean and going through PAWS (which sucks because my libido is lower than ever because of PAWS and I have more ED). Ive really been clean for 6 months; but "relapsed" 3.5 months ago because I thought I was better after 3 months clean; but I was wrong. The strange thing is that I dont feel any different mentally - no more mental calrity and my motivation at work is just as strong as it was before. I really only quit because of the physical symptoms. But IO know it all started because of the longing for a relationship. I also learned that the girl I spent most of my time thinking about was actually a lesbian and just came out last year, and so that really helped my self esteem. She could have easily made me her boy toy and used me as her fake BF, but she didn't and I really appreciate that.

Anyway, it was really emotional reading your story. I know my story is nowhere as dramatic, but it just touched me in a few ways. My jobis perfect for me now, and that hlps a LOT: I rarely have to talk to people I dont know; I am not in sales but work with our (small) sales team. Working with 8 people who then work directly with customers is a whole lot easier than working with random customers. Sales jobs are not for introverts like us.

Cheers mate. Best of luck in this new life you've forged.
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Postby moneypowerrespect » Mon Jul 13, 2020 3:19 pm

@SparkleFly12 I really appreciate you reply buddy

It looks like you've been through a lot of what i have. Some really harrowing times there, weed can sometimes sit in the background comfortably until time get really bad which is when it can become a dependency.

Here's an idea though, may not apply to you but i'm realising how much of an impact porn and masturbation have had on my life. My self image and the prominence of my erection is directly linked to it. This subject has become a whole new chapter of my addiction conquering journey! So much so that i may even write a part three to my "i want my life back" series.
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