Why Didn't I Get High The First Time I Smoked Weed?

8 months ago

Smoking grass on a social level didn’t become popular until the 1960s. As a matter of fact, it was looked down upon and downright shameful. It wasn’t until the hippie movement of the 60s and 70s when a counter-cultural movement rejected the mores of mainstream life on a global level and smoking weed became a rebellious, personal statement.

Not getting high on the first joint someone smokes is not uncommon and has been a topic for debate for decades.

According to a study done in 1968 by Eric Goode, revealed that in a questionnaire filled out by first-time users, 13 percent said they didn’t know if they got high or not, and 41 percent claimed they didn’t get high at all. So, why is this phenomenon still happening today?

There are some logical answers for this question and still more scientific research that needs to be done to have a conclusive answer; however, this article will take a look at the top three reasons why most people don’t get high the first time they smoke weed.

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The Cannabis Contains More CBD Than THC

THC is the main compound found in weed that gets you high. The more THC a strain contains per gram, the higher you can get with every toke.

CBD, on the other hand, is more of a body high and designed to be a pain reliever. It is also used for depression as well as anxiety; however, weed without the THC chemical compound will not get you high.

If you smoked weed for the first time and didn’t get high, there’s a good chance you smoke some weed that contained more CBD than THC. There are some ways to know for sure if you’re weed contains more THC than CBD:

  • Buy from a trusted source like a legal retail cannabis store or if you’re prescribed medical marijuana, get it from a licensed dispensary as both sources are required by law to label each product with its chemical composition either on the package or on the jars inside the display case.

  • Buy a jeweler’s loupe or USB microscope to inspect the trichomes on the buds. Weed that has mostly milky trichomes with a few amber ones is a good sign that your weed contains high levels of THC. If you see that the trichomes are mostly all amber in color, this means your weed is CBD quality.

  • Ask a good friend. Someone who smokes weed on a regular basis will be able to tell you if the weed is CBD grade or contains THC.

Incorrect Inhalation Methods Were Used

Another reason why most people don’t get high the first time they smoke weed is due to incorrect inhalation.

A lot of people including cigarette smokers who smoke weed for the first time, smoke it like it’s a cigarette and exhale too quickly or do not fully inhale. It’s important to hold the smoke in as long as you can before you exhale, this will allow the body to properly absorb the chemicals and produce the euphoric high you’re after.

When it comes to holding in the smoke, it’s also important to take more than one toke. Even though the quality of the weed is far superior to decades ago, a good five to six tokes off most strains today is enough for the THC to be absorbed by your lungs and transferred into your bloodstream.

...From there it will make its way to your brain, and if it’s done correctly, you should get pretty high.

Everyone has Different CB1 Receptors

No two people will experience the same high because everyone has different CB1 receptors.

Although the high can be similar, your brain might have a different response than someone else who smoked the same joint. This is especially true for someone who is smoking weed for the first time who have high levels of cannabinoid receptors, they will experience a big high. For individuals who have low levels of cannabinoid receptors, their brain is resistant to the chemical compounds found in cannabis and will have the opposite effect.

If this is the situation, then it’s possible that your body just needs more time to respond and adjust to the THC. Additionally, you might need to smoke larger amounts of cannabis than someone who has higher levels of CB1 receptors in their DNA.

Both situations can require some experimentation of different strains as well as some patience.

What’s the Best Remedy for Not Getting High the First Time?

The best remedy for not getting high the first time is to get high a second time!

...In most cases, those who smoke weed a second time, do feel the effects of the THC and get high.

Remember to start with a good quality strain because there’s a lot of weed out there that is called “garbage weed” for a reason, no matter how much you smoke of it, you will not get high.

It’s important to remember, the reason why most people don’t get high the first time they smoke weed is because they smoked CBD instead of THC, exhaled the smoke too quickly, didn’t smoke enough, have different CB1 receptors, and didn’t start with a quality strain like Gorilla Glue (GG4) or Girl Scout Cookies. Both of these strains are high in THC and provide a happy, euphoric high that is energizing as well as uplifting.

What was your first high like?

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Great post! Lot of interesting information on here. Luckily I've never experienced a lack of high when smoking, so I guess I've been lucky enough to always have received high THC buds. :)

It was interesting to me about the colors, I never knew that prior to this! :P

Weed that has mostly milky trichomes with a few amber ones is a good sign that your weed contains high levels of THC. If you see that the trichomes are mostly all amber in color, this means your weed is CBD quality.


You would notice if you harvest early it gives a much more cerebral THC high as apposed to later when the CBD's have time to mature.


Unfortunately it's still not legal for me to grow. :(
Hopefully soon tho. More and more states are hopping on the recreational wagon. :)


Will definitely be keeping that in mind tho!

Interesting. I'm fairly certain although it is hard to recall the exact first time - perhaps I didn't understand the effects at first and it took the second round before my "Oh man" moment!

Memory as I wrote that floods back - comment made previously here also about first time with elder brothers. I think they made sure i felt something. I may have even been sick!

I can’t remember my 1st high but I certainly can remember my last one....

Very well written, thank you!

I guess I did get high the first time I smoked back in my college time, not sure , hard to recall. I just remember it was fun with my roomies . Now I do it for medical purpose and I feel so relaxed. Things changed in life, but love for Cannabis didn’t :-)

With 💕,

( >‿< )

Epic topic! It was discussed so many times...
Still didn't find the answer but heard it from MOST people who smoked weed!
I also remember I was like I am all ok while all older smokers started acting differenty and go soo high!
I don't know maybe I was so focused on ''cool'' mode and in a semi-paranoid state cause it was a first time, we smoked they talked laughed and went home...
And that's it as I remember...

It's more likely that user error or bad weed is the reason someone didn't get high, I would think.

A very good post that bring it to the point. I also didn't get high at my first 2 or 3 smokes.

i was drunk the first time,and vomitted.The next day i retried the situation.Now 28 years later , still loving da herb, yet more ritually. A lot has changed, since weed became an industry.First they genetically over thc'eed da sacral herb, and now in most countries only cbd is legal.
For best medicinal and recreative use ,both compounds are wished.

What a great read. I remember from smoking as a kid that some of mine friend couldn't get high first time smoking. We always thought that it was because they did not know how and what to feel.
Never thought of searching about the real reasons, as you loose contact with people as time goes on, at least the ones that are starting or never tried.
Thanks for the answers.

Because your classmate sold you oregano and not weed lol

I got soooooo stoned on my 1st time smoking I felt like I was in a movie lol Like time was slowed down and everything was moving frame by frame it was amazing I sat on the couch for hours stoned to the bone haha

For some, it is just they have very shitty weed. HAHA