A Woke Bloke


I’m an upperclassman in college studying electrical engineering. I’m very introverted and have a lot of social anxiety. My sister insists that I have to put myself out there, especially now that college is coming to an end. My parents insist that I’ll need to get a job, possibly move to another city, make new friends, and start my life. I know these things are true, but they’re also terribly frightening for someone with social anxiety. Making things worse is the fact that I hate the taste of alcohol. I’ve avoided drinking altogether since only a few weeks after turning twenty-one. Coming from a pretty conservative family meant I’ve also avoided experimenting with alternatives. But California recently legalized recreational marijuana in additional to medicinal, which I know is used by patients to treat different disorders, chronic anxiety being one of them. Would it make sense for me to explore cannabis as an option, now that it’s legal?

While medicinal and recreational cannabis might be legal in California, the drug remains federally prohibited according to the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), which means you should remain cautious and thoughtful. That being said, the impetus behind your investigation is certainly justified. Experts at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) estimate that as much as 19% of American adults suffered from an anxiety disorder in the past year and that was nearly a decade ago. Things have escalated radically since then.

Anxiety is commonly cited as a reason patients seek medicinal marijuana, and the benefits seem compelling. Scientists continue to petition the federal government for more clinical trials, which is critical to understanding the full spectrum of outcomes. That’s especially important with the legalization movement building increasing momentum, nationwide. Consider visiting a clinic or contacting a medical practitioner with experience recommending cannabis to treat anxiety. Talk with your doctor about ways you would take the cannabis, such as using a high-quality vaporizer, which would be easier on your lungs.

Consulting experts in the field is always a sound approach. You might also consider discussing the subject with cannabis lawyers in Los Angeles, for instance. Having a firm grasp of the legality behind the substance is essential for anyone seriously contemplating becoming a user.

The last thing worthwhile to reflect upon is whether or not you want to disclose your choices to friends and family. It can be overwhelmingly tempting to think during an era of unprecedented acceptance that people will also approve of your decision, but the two stances shouldn’t be confused. Researchers still have cause for concern when it comes to cannabis usage, which means you should exercise a great degree of care with your actions.

“The real freedom of any individual can always be measured by the amount of responsibility which he [or she] must assume for his [or her] own welfare and security.” -- Robert Welch

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