Disclaimer: I’m in no way encouraging anyone to partake in any illegal substances to relieve psychological symptoms. I just thought this was interesting, and for those living in areas where marijuana/medical marijuana is legal, using cannabis could be an option in treatment.
I’ve been hearing that using Cannabis can have a positive effect on the symptoms of NPD, as it creates a kind of ego death. I found this post on Psychforums, written by a person with NPD who finds it helpful. Others have said much the same.
For me, it was instrumental in seeing myself honestly — the long-term patterns, a new context for past events. I smoked every day for over a year. I have mixed feelings about its benefit at this point. It makes it hard to maintain day-to-day continuity of plans, projects. But, that loss of focus was part of how it helped me. I have a tendency to get too single-mindedly into plans and projects. Typically, if I started to face myself I’d distract myself with a new project — and then beat on myself to be perfect, forgetting that misguided idea to look inward.
When I smoked the first time (with a young work friend who wanted to get me high) I was overwhelmed with paranoia and anxiety. Now I’m convinced it was my conscious mind losing control of what it spent a lifetime protecting.
I didn’t have an epiphany about myself. Over a year pieces of the puzzle came together. A lot of it was self-examination while straight, reading a lot, etc. But, a lot of it came together while stoned. Usually this was just seeing things differently, or two pieces coming together in a way it wouldn’t if left to my ordinary rationalizations.
I didn’t seize on these things as if I was receiving divine thoughts. I knew I was stoned. But, I’d keep whatever it was in mind and over time it proved to be a key to the puzzle.
Example: A few months ago I was thinking about what caused me to have these traits. I could think of a dozen things and that vagueness made me question how significant my traits are. I dismissed that my first 6 years were it. How could it be when I remember nothing of it?
While that was my topic of thought, one night I was stoned and realized: I have exactly six memories of my mother, and they’re all bad (inappropriate, abusive). These weren’t repressed memories. I’ve recalled all of them occasionally throughout my life. I just never realized they were the only ones — and there are no good ones.
That’s how it was for a year as I put things together, weighed their significance, etc. My mind gave me what I needed to know when I needed to know it.
The way I see it: alcohol makes you feel good by making your problems go away. (Later you feel worse when they come back with a hangover.). Cannabis makes you feel how you are while your mind is open enough to take it. (And then you feel refreshed the next day. Perhaps with some things in clearer focus.).
Even now, smoking occasionally, if I feel anxious I consider what’s going on with me; what I might be unsettled about. It usually comes to me. I often think of it as a “getting honest” session. I like this better than a day-to-day haze. It hits me harder when I’m not acclimated to it.
All I can say is it helped me a lot. But, everyone’s different. Studies exist indicating cannabis can hasten schizophrenia in those already disposed to it. We probably are. Be careful.
I saw a thread in this forum where they talked about cannabis making you more aware of your SuperEgo (sadistic, hyper-critical). I immediately understood what they were talking about because I remember when I felt I could distinguish that part of me while stoned as a distinct entity, not all of me. Like I was telling it, “dude, chill.” 😉
PS: I’ve had no trouble quitting. No urges. For me it’s not addictive at all. I’ve been addicted to nicotine. I believe I easily could be addicted to alcohol if I drank. (I believe I have been when I drank a lot in the past.). But, I had no trouble quitting after a year. There were no cravings. Maybe just muscle memory, an urge to reach for it out of habit.