I am a 28-year-old female. I desperately want to have children, but I feel that I am unfit for parenthood. The most obvious reason for this is that I am a daily pot-smoker. I’ve cut back at least 80% in the last month, but I lack the self-control to quit entirely. In the past 10-12 years, I’ve only been successful in my attempts to quit when I purge my home of all marijuana and smoking devices. Unfortunately, my husband is unwilling to do this with me. The best compromise we’ve come to yet is that he’s said he will pack it away in his car so that it’s not as easily accessible to me.
There is an underlying issue, which, if solved, perhaps would allow me to quit under less ideal circumstances: I don’t know how to manage my extremely high anxiety levels without relying on some kind of compulsive behavior. Since the onset of puberty, it’s been one thing after another. It started with self-harm at 11, and progressed into eating disorders throughout my teen years. I grew out of those habits, but replaced them with drinking, smoking cigarettes, and abusing whatever drugs were available to me as well as behaving promiscuously. I’ve quit all of these habits as well, but the daily pot-smoking remains a constant.
When I’m smoking heavily, I get high first thing in the morning, and throughout the day, even before school, work, or exercise, easily 5-10 times a day. This has caused me to be isolated, disconnected from my emotions (kind of the goal, but clearly harmful as well), and keeps me in negative situations & relationships longer than I normally would be, because I can escape reality instead of dealing with the problem. And, to be honest, I just feel like a complete loser no matter what I achieve in other areas. I know that feeling unhappy or upset from time to time is part of life, but I feel it so intensely and often that I don’t know how to cope.
The only healthy thing I’ve found that comes close to the kind of anxiety relief I get from marijuana is a regimen of strenuous hot yoga every other day or more. However, this is more of a preventative measure than something I can rely on at any moment when overwhelming emotions come, as they inevitably do. I usually plan my life around yoga classes, but I’m unable to do so right now because of financial problems and an irregular schedule, as well as living in a small town with limited options.
So, my question is: What can I do to deal with my sadness and anxiety in a way that’s healthy and sustainable, even when my schedule is busy, I’m caring for a child, or the yoga studio is inaccessible?
I hope this isn’t too long-winded. I would very much like to hear your thoughts, and I appreciate your taking the time to read my email. What you do with free domain is admirable– thank you.
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