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16685927 tn?1450569495

Anxiety/Depersonalization

Hello recently I have been experiencing a huge difficulty in my life and it scares the crap out of me! I am an 18 year old male that is lightweight, and I have a zooming metabolism. Around two months ago I wanted to try a little marijuana with some kids that I know. I never really was the type to give into to peer pressure or wanted to try drugs or even alcohol. I noticed a little anxiety in my life that has developed over the past few years but nothing serious, I would just be terrified to speak in front of my class or show off a presentation. I also think I might have mild social anxiety, as I’m not the most social teenager out there. Anyways I thought I would try the marijuana, and it was huge mistake! I had what I think was a panic attack, It felt like my body was in slow motion, and my sense of touch was really delayed. It was the scariest thing I have ever experienced. The high I felt was insane and my body was numb all over. After feeling this way for 4-5 days it finally went away. Or so I thought! A week and a half later I was driving to my community college and I reached for my energy drink, and I went in a sense of panic, getting that same feeling as when I smoked the marijuana. I finally sat down and told my family what was going on, and we saw a doctor who prescribed me with Zoloft/Sertraline. I was a little nervous to take it at first then I decided to take 25mg which the doctor was fine with considering I was prescribed 50mg. When I first took the medicine the side effects were terrible, heartburn, indigestion, loss of appetite, sleep insomnia, and just constantly on edge. That passed a few days later and I decided to keep going to school. The numbness and panic attacks started to go away, I just get really nervous driving to school in case another panic attack were to happen, I even sometimes get a little nervous by touching certain things, and I over think it to the max! Since I haven't been driving to school my grandparents have been taking me which makes me feel a lot better. I also should mention I’ve always been nervous to drive, and didn’t get my permit until I was about to turn 18, and got my liscence 6 months later. Anyways my anxiety/panic is off and on, and sometimes I read things online just out of curiosity and being scared, which can make it a lot worse. I read a few things online regarded the same situation that I was in about panic attacks after marijuana. Depersonalization/Derealization was a big thing that was discussed, after I read it I felt a little more nervous because is it possible that I might have it also? I just don’t feel all there sometimes, I feel like the original me is gone and has been replaced with a nervous/paranoid 18 year old kid. Right now I feel confused, worried, and pretty depressed Sometimes I zone out, and my vision goes blurry as if it’s losing focus. And my eyes seem to be a lot more sensitive to bright lights (maybe from the zoloft). I don’t know if i should take other medication such as xanax along with the zoloft. This whole thing just affected me a lot and it *****. Sometimes I even have really deep thoughts trying to comprehend life, and existence. It even gets to the point where a question the realness of life, and if we as human are just micro specs floating around in the universe? Doing this ***** because I have Religious beliefs and my faith hasn’t been what I want it to be lately, as i’m trying to be a better person all together, faith can be super difficult which i’m trying to wrap my head around.  I’m just a really analytical person and I hate that about myself! Is there something wrong with me? Or is it just all in my head? I feel as if I’m going crazy by certain thoughts that I have, and over analyzing everything. I am so blessed with everything I have, and luckily I have a great family who keep me going everyday. I honestly don’t know what I would do without them. I've never really been a depressed kid, but lately I haven't been happy that’s for sure! Anyways if you took the time to read this thank you so much! And if you could help or respond that would be great. As the times get tough I try to push forward….it just really *****. The world is rapidly changing which isn’t making things any better fearing terrorist attacks, shootings, and just crime itself. Usually I just try to keep my thoughts and emotions to myself, but writing this even helps me cope and relating to people and letting them know they're not alone. Life is a great thing, and I want to live a healthy one, it’s just hard living life if you're mostly living in your head. The worst part of all is I know the same old me is there somewhere, I just kind find him permanently. Or could it even be that i’m transitioning to an adult and going through so many changes in my life, that my brain is going into overdrive and overwhelmed by the anxiety. At this point I almost have anxiety over the anxiety haha. Thanks again for reading all of this and I wish everyone the best of luck with life and finding who “YOU” are as a human being. As I sure am struggling with it. One last thing I was wondering is what type of therapy should I seek out PTSD therapy for anxiety, an Anxiety coach, Psychologist? What would benefit me all together?
11 Responses
Avatar universal
You did what you did, can't erase that now.  What you describe sounds in part like a normal high, exactly what people smoke pot to feel.  For you, it was frightening.  Many people get their first anxiety attacks while stoned, as it brings out and focuses attention on things that might have been buried safely inside.  Okay.  So at that point, as the anxiety lingered, you should have seen a therapist and been reassured and learned some relaxation techniques so it didn't become a chronic problem.  Instead, you saw a general doc, who doesn't study mental health in any detail, but who does know how to give out drugs.  In my opinion, it was way too soon to start a life on an antidepressant or any other medication before you learned whether timely therapy could have taught you how to control this on your own.  And yes, this age you're at is difficult no matter what, so it's just exaggerating this bad experience.  What it told you is that marijuana isn't a drug for you, and now you have to move on.  Therapy is a great idea, with the hope you can get off the medication as soon as possible so it doesn't become a life-long thing.  Relax, and welcome to the crowd.
Avatar universal
Hi there, it sounds to me like your body just took a while to get the marijuana out of your system. If you had never smoked this or tried other drugs before it's quite natural that you would have such an effect. You're probably remembering the feelings of the high also. I too have tried a drug through peer pressure, I did it one other time. I spent a lot of time feeling ashamed and thinking about everything that happened when I tried this drug but I just decided to take the attitude of 'ok I tried it, I won't be doing that again - learn from this experience and move on, stop over thinking your actions that were not your actions but the actions of a person under the influence of a powerful substance'
I too, question life quite a lot and at times I have let the fear of death consume me and trouble me, I think now I realise that life is for living and the more time I spent worrying about something out with my control the less time I spent living my life. Maybe you would benefit from meditation, it's easier than it sounds- it's about concentrating on your own deep breaths in and out, if your mind wanders on to other things just gently bring it back on to the breathing alone. You need to do this everyday, make it a part of your daily routine and you will feel much more relaxed.
I would also recommend speaking to someone who can offer cognitive therapy which will help you to change the way you 'over think' certain things.
It is a strange time changing into an adult, you should think about what you would like to do with your life - maybe you already know?
The goal should be to not rely on any medication, talking therapy is the way forward and the best long term solution as well as the meditation.
What you have to say to yourself also is that there are many things I do not understand about life and the universe and our very existence but life is for living not fearing the Unknown. We are here to enjoy life, give kindness to others, be with our families, realise each day is precious. Have no regrets in life, go out and do what you want to do and achieve what you want to achieve. Your potential is up to how much effort you dedicate, live in the 'now' and let go of the past (trying of the marijuana)
Remember you are what you think, meaning your thoughts become your feelings, think positive things and positivity will fill your life.
I hope that some of this is even a little bit helpful to you and I wish you great things in life!
Avatar universal
Oh, and let me add, if you do decide at any time to stop taking the Zoloft, do it carefully and slowly, at your speed.  These meds can be hard to stop taking or they can be easy, but most general docs don't know how to do this.  If a person does decide to go on medication because therapy has failed and life has become intolerable, it should be done with a good psychiatrist who, after you talk to the person, seems to respect and know how to use these meds safely and cautiously and how to take people off them safely.  Peace.
16685927 tn?1450569495
Thank you so much for the response, I'm running off of no sleep been up for 24 hours now, which isn't good. right now my anxiety is terrible as I sit here responding crying, and shaking as I can only think about the anxiety/fear. I don't know if lingering off of the medication will help or not, dang I don't even know if it's necessarily helping considering I'm only on 25 mg. Anyways thanks for the response and i'll keep in touch  
16685927 tn?1450569495
I realize that what i did was wrong, I mean i'm a teenager aren't we suppose to do dumb things sometimes? Anyways I just wish the weed didn't affect me this much. Iv'e been up all night watching youtube videos and videos about depersonalization. I just get scared it's all in my head. Anyways thanks for the response and I'll keep in touch.
16685927 tn?1450569495
Also should I see a Psychologist or a Psychiatrist? Is there one you prefer over the other?
Avatar universal
Don't worry about depersonalization and derealization.  These are just descriptions of things people with anxiety and depression sometimes feel, but they aren't labels of who you are.  I don't think you actually have it.  What you had was a high you didn't enjoy that scared you and a weedover.  Marijuana just isn't for everyone, and even when it is it can become a problem later.  Any drug that affects the brain can be a problem, but how much of a problem it is depends on how you react to it and think about it.  You're overthinking and overworrying, and stay off the internet when you don't have a diagnosis.  It can be a useful thing when you have a diagnosis to see if your doc is doing the right things, but when you have no real diagnosis it's just a horror movie.  You see a psychologist if you want therapy.  You see a psychiatrist if you want drugs.  Most psychiatrists don't do therapy anymore, and even when they do they charge a lot more than psychologists with less education about psychology.  
16685927 tn?1450569495
Ok, thank you very much. Tuesday I have my very first appointment with a psychologist, who I hope will give me a better understanding of what's going on. My doctor also put me on .50 mg Clonazepam twice a day (1 at night and 1 in the morning). This should help with my onset panic and anxiety. Also should I talk to my Psychologist about the Clonazepam as I know Benzos can often be addictive, note I only started last night.
16685927 tn?1450569495
I don't want to live a life ran off medication, i'm just worried that It might be the only thing that will help me besides the therapy.  
Avatar universal
Here's my opinion, and please don't take this as your only source, but many years ago I was also put on clonazepam twice a day when I was first put on an antidepressant for my chronic anxiety attacks -- not just one event such as yours.  They are always addictive that way, and I don't think you really need the drugs -- I think you need therapy and to relax about this.  Taking a benzo only as needed, once in awhile, is probably all you should have been given if anything, but the way you're taking the clonazepam it will be very hard to stop taking after awhile.  Drugs are the last resort, not the first.  Again, general docs don't know much about these drugs and even only the best psychiatrists do.  Try and do without the benzos every day if you can.  I know everything seems out of hand, but you're young and you will get over this if you just realize you're dealing with a stressful event, not yet a life change.  It might turn into that but you're not at that stage yet.  If you really feel you need medication see a psychiatrist -- your psychologist can probably suggest one who is good -- and get a better opinion than the ones I think you're getting from your doctor.  But whatever you decide to do, and again, I'm no oracle, remember, the only cure for this is to change the way you're thinking about it, not drugs.  Peace.  Oh, and don't blame yourself -- most of use pot at some point, and stop using it as well.  You just had a shorter experience than most, but don't go blaming yourself.  Stuff happens.
1 Comments
Hello there, It's been a while since iv'e last spoke about this topic. I am doing a lot better now. I'm seeing a psychologist weekly, and he agrees 100% about taking the meds for a year until the thc finally leaves my system. So basically what happened was my brained was introduced to a chemical that it didn't agree with what so ever! and he said that I may potentially have a thc allergy, that caused something called acute stress disorder, which is why I would continue to relive these panic attacks. So after a year of taking the Benzo and Zoloft I should be good to go as the wean me off of the drugs until im back to normal. Thanks again!
16685927 tn?1450569495
Ok Thank you for the feedback. ill keep in touch once I speak to my psychologist on Tuesday. I'll keep in touch and thanks again.  
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