Name: Steven Axtell
Location: Essexville, Michigan
I met Steven on Twitter after seeing a post he wrote about quitting weed. I chose him for the interview because he’s at the beginning, a place many of us remember. At 15 years old, it’s pretty common to start experimenting with pot, alcohol, and other drugs. The question is, who will experiment, and who will become consumed by their habit? Steven seems to be in control and recently decided to quit smoking weed for reasons I will let him explain in the interview. His take on the whole experience is super mellow. It’s interesting to me, since my run as a chronic was so much longer and quitting was so much more difficult. What if I had quit at 15? – QWAS Admin
QWAS: Tell us a bit about yourself – where are you from? Where do you live now? How old are you? Do you go to school? Work? What are your interests/hobbies?
Steven: I was born in Dallas, Texas. I currently reside in Michigan with my Father and older Brother. I’m 15 years old. I am currently enrolled at Garber High School. I have no job. I’m extremely passionate when it comes to Acting, Film Making, Photography, Writing, and Music. I’m a fine arts kinda guy.
QWAS: How long have you smoked weed for?
Steven: About a year.
QWAS: Tell us about the first time you smoked weed, and describe the days, weeks and months directly after…
Steven: Well. It was February 2012, about a week after my birthday. I was really curious about the whole entire concept of Marijuana experimentation, I knew I was going to try it eventually, considering the fact that my Sister is a huge stoner. Lovable nonetheless. Anyway, she was at work, I went into her room, found her bowl, found a jar of weed, and I just smoked by myself for the first time ever. It was quite nice, I took a shower afterwards. I felt amazing. There was no feeling quite like it. Shortly after that episode of being stoned out of my mind, I began to smoke it about once every other week, and then it happened every other day. Summer 2012 was probably the climactic experience of my experimentation, everyday I got high. Every. Single. Day.
QWAS: Did you have fun getting high when you first started? What kinds of activities did you enjoy while high?
Steven: Oh, of course. I mostly enjoyed just fucking around on my guitar and playing video games. Whip up a bowl of ramen noodles and watch movies until I passed out.
QWAS: What was your preferred method of smoking weed?
Steven: Bowls. I loved bowls. I like to smoke joints by myself at times, it makes me feel somewhat sophisticated and “hip” for some indecipherable reason.
QWAS: Did you use tobacco in your joints? Do or did you smoke cigarettes?
Steven: Never. I can’t stand cigarettes.
QWAS: How many of your friends smoked weed? Family?
Steven: In the time range of summer 2012, not many of my friends smoked weed as much as I did. The only known family member that I knew smoked/smoked with was my sister. I love her so much.
QWAS: Who knew about your pot habit? Close friends? Your family? Everyone? No one?
Steven: My Sister, of course. And a handful of close friends. My grandmother eventually caught on and she told my Dad. I told him that “I quit a month ago.” and he believed me. I was in the clear, then I got arrested.
@quitweedsucceed My Dad had a bad history with it. He doesn’t want me going down the same path, and some of my friends, yes.
— Megapixel(@nevetS_lletxA) April 18, 2013
QWAS: Describe your habit. Did you smoke every day? In the mornings? Before bed? During the day? At work?
Steven: After Summer Vacation, I rarely smoked. It was still a common thing for me to do, just not as much.
QWAS: In addition to weed, did you also use other drugs like coke, ecstasy, alcohol?
Steven: The most hardcore substance I’ve experimented with was shrooms. It was lovely.
QWAS: Did your pot habit ever interfere with your relationships? School? Work? Goals in life?
Steven: A couple friendships were destroyed, other than that, it really didn’t effect anything else.
QWAS: When and why did your feelings about weed start to change? Was there a particular event?
Steven: It never crossed my mind to quit until I got arrested.
April 12th, 2013 marks the day where I am officially going to quit Marijuana and any other hallucinogenic substance.
— Megapixel(@nevetS_lletxA) April 13, 2013
QWAS: When you made the decision to quit smoking weed, did you think it would be a permanent choice?
Steven: Getting arrested made up my mind for me. I’m not really sure if it’s going to be permanent. I’ll more than likely start again when I’m old enough to hold my own.
QWAS: Had you made previous attempts to quit, and if so, why were they not successful?
Steven: Yes, I’ve tried many times. I just couldn’t, I had so much fun doing it.
QWAS: Describe your reasons for quitting, and how you felt on your quit day.
Steven: Like I said before, I got arrested. I felt kinda confused, it feels like it didn’t even happen. Either way, I’ll be alright.
QWAS: Who did you tell once you made the decision to quit?
Steven: My best friend, Austin.
QWAS: Were your friends and family supportive of your decision?
Steven: Somewhat, yeah.
QWAS: What changes in your life were necessary in order to give yourself the best chance at quitting successfully?
Steven: The way my family perceives me now, they’ve lost A LOT of respect when it comes to my self being. That’s more than enough.
QWAS: Describe your first day without weed.
Steven: Didn’t really feel anything.
QWAS: Describe your first week without weed.
Steven: Starting to miss it, I’ll be fine though.
QWAS: Describe your first month without weed.
Steven: Hasn’t been a month yet.
QWAS: Did you experience withdrawal symptoms?
Steven: Not that I know of.
QWAS: Did you have any relapses on your path to quit weed?
Steven: Not that I can think of.
QWAS: What was the hardest part about quitting for you personally?
Steven: Nothing really, I’ve been really mellow lately. I like it.
QWAS: How has your life changed since quitting?
Steven: I’ve been somewhat more “chill” and “calm”. It feels nice.
QWAS: Do you still have the same friends? New friends?
Steven: Same friends yeah, I love them and they love me.
@quitweedsucceed Close friends are sticking with me through it, I guess. My Dad is pretty pissed. My Mom is getting used to it.
— Megapixel(@nevetS_lletxA) April 16, 2013
QWAS: Do you plan to stay quit going forward?
Steven: No idea. I guess I’ll see in the years to come.
QWAS: What do you do now to unwind, relax, and reward yourself?
Steven: Play some guitar. Read a book or something.
QWAS: What advice do you have for other people who are planning to quit?
Steven: Quitting isn’t as bad as you think. You start to feel the change after a couple days, and it feels pretty damn good.
QWAS: If you have a funny story about smoking weed, now’s the time. Let’s hear it.
Steven: There really isn’t one I can think of. Other than the fact that I get knocked the hell out easily when it comes to bong rips.
Thanks, man. It was nice to have someone to tell my story to.