Friday, October 30, 2020

I Tried to Use Illegal Marijuana For Bipolar Disorder Treatmet

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When I was in business school, I was diagnosed with major depression, and then re-diagnosed with bipolar disorder several years later. Throughout the years I’d tried dozens of medications to varying effects; some of them never worked, some worked and made me feel terrible, and most of them stopped working after a few years and sent me into a psychiatric hospital for adjustment and observation.

After the most recent stint in the looney bin, I began to wonder if I could handle the ups and downs of medication changes over the course of my life. Then it happened that a friend told me that he’d been managing his depression with marijuana as Bipolar Disorder Treatmet. Lightbulb!Like everyone else, I’d smoked weed in college and had walked around saying, “Oh my God, I’m SOOO high,” at varying intervals before someone gave me a bag of Cheetos. Since then, I’d smoked whenever it was offered but had never gone out and bought it myself.As it happens, my roommate’s friend John* is what you’d call a weed enthusiast. He smokes nearly every day, sometimes for recreation and sometimes for the pain in his reconstructed shoulder. He’d brought some smoke to the apartment on a random Friday night and I became curious, joining them instead of abstaining like an upstanding citizen.John, happy to share his knowledge, began telling me about the strain of marijuana that he’d brought over.

Experiment thwarted, but I felt like I was on the right track.The next time John came to the apartment, he brought two different kinds of weed with him that were supposed to be “social,” the kind of thing you could smoke before a party or going out to a movie and be fairly high yet mostly lucid. I thought that a more social experience would be closer to what I wanted — something to lift my depression while leaving me coherent and awake. After we smoked, we went down the street to a wine tasting. I was in a good mood, but felt like I was going to tip over. Later that night, I wound up face-down on my bed in my clothes. Through weed websites and apps, I learned that I should look for certain compounds in the weed I smoked, notably cannabinoids, chemical compounds that cause medical symptom relief. I’d already known about THC, but learned that I should look for high levels of that cannabinoid for a more medical-grade product.

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