Negative aspects of marijuana

Inspired by this post/thread:

https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showpost.php?p=21140372&postcount=36

When I was younger and experimented with marijuana, a couple of times, I became paranoid as hell. The very last time I smoked it, I literally thought I was dead and was in hell.

Is this an issue with legal marijuana? Are we going to have people walking around thinking terrible things, maybe throwing a punch at me because I asked them for directions, but they thought I was robbing them?

No. There are a lot of different strains in our local dispensary and the staff is quite well-informed as to which does what. I suspect if you went in and told them you’ve reacted with extreme paranoia in the past, they’d be able to point you to a strain that would minimize it. Growing it has really become a science so buying isn’t like when you buy from a guy in a parking lot. I have a friend with MS who’s a fan of one particular medicinal strain. it minimizes her symptoms and leaves her clear-headed. It’s been miraculous for her.

It will be madness, I tell you… Reefer madness!

Colorado, hard to say for sure. Even the “against” cops don’t blame it directly for the state’s increasing crime rate. Personally I am far less inclined to exercise poor judgment under the influence of the devil’s lettuce than with alcohol. In fact, I tend not to exercise much at all after blazing up. Except for what it takes to operate the TV remote. I would be uninterested in walking around in public while stoned. Data point of 1.

Also, to add to Helena’s post. I think if you told the dispensary people of a strong negative reaction in the past, they would dig a bit deeper into what brought you into their shop. If you are looking for symptom management, then they’d steer you to a doctor who might send you back with a prescription for a non-intoxicating CBD oil. If you just want to get high, they would probably not sell to you, because the stuff just isn’t for everyone. The big positives of legalization that I’ve seen are 1) you know what you’re getting, and 2) the dispensary community actually has a standard of ethics that eludes liquor store owners.

One negative aspect is that it reeks, and people who smoke it constantly reek as well.

I somehow managed to graduate from college without ever being exposed to the stuff. Decades later I was working in a fabric store and my manager found a small bag stuffed between bolts of fabric. She gave the bag to me and asked me to flush it. Just holding it, I felt like someone reached inside my skull and gave my brain a spin. Ugh.
A few years later we were walking through a mall in Durango, CO and a man walked rather too close by me. I got the same dizzy sensation.
Not only do you reek, people who react badly to the stuff won’t appreciate being near you.

One of the biggest drawbacks to the stuff, IME, is that stoners aren’t nearly as interesting as they think they are. The evangelical stoners are actually worse when they aren’t stoned because they will go on at great and tedious length about weed and how wonderful it is and all the minutia of growing and using the stuff. The endless nattering about different strains bores me into a coma. They’re worse than wine snobs or Hummel figurine collectors, can you dig that happy crappy?

The best stoners are the ones you would never expect are stoners.

That is fucked up, it is not normal or typical in any way, and I’ve never heard anyone else report an experience like this, so I think you either smoked weed that was laced with something much stronger, or you experienced some sort of delirium caused by an underlying neurological issue.

There aren’t any inherent drawbacks of marijuana, but there are drawbacks to excessive use of it, just as there are drawbacks to excessive use of anything. I know people who NEVER stop smoking, they torch bowl after bowl after bowl, all day every day. These individuals, while they are able to function properly, definitely have issues with being absent-minded and having poor short term memory. When I hang out with them I’m always needing to repeat things and their train of thought gets lost easily.

Now, it’s not like they sit staring dumbly into space, they’re mentally “present” and can be very animated and articulate in this state, but, say, they’ll easily forget something that we had planned to do, and have to be reminded multiple times to do something they were supposed to do, or can’t follow the plot of a movie or show. It doesn’t really impede their functioning in a meaningful way, but it can be difficult to stay on topic in a conversation or stick to a goal of accomplishing some activity or other, with these people.

Still, they aren’t even 1% as difficult to deal with as someone who puts away drink after drink all day long.

Edit: some of them have very highly-skilled and high-paying jobs. You have to be making bank to go through as much weed as these dudes do.

I’ve heard Fred Rogers used to really burn one down!

I knew one gal who had a reaction much like OP. She was certain she was dying. I’d seen a totally unhinged violent bad acid trip, it looked similar to what she was going through from where I was standing. Kept me clean for another 30 years.

And for what it’s worth, there are people who use the stuff, and then there are stoners. I have about as much use for stoners as I do for anyone who makes their entire life about one aspect of their persona.

He was so nice, he’d bring the joints to tears.

I smoke relatively little weed – I get a half gram to a gram maybe twice a month, and it lasts maybe 5 days. Even though I smoke A LOT of cigarettes on top, my lungs are noticeably much more irritated when I’ve been been partaking in the greener stuff.

Obviously not an issue with edibles.I’m not sure about concentrates. It’s enough to be annoying.

It doesn’t work properly for me. Being stoned disrupts my thoughts and makes me feel as if I have an ever-growing backlog of things that need thinking about, but it’s SO HARD. I feel as if my brain is trapped under a hot blanket and it’s crawling around trying to find a way out. I can’t string together coherent sentences because there are so many words, I can’t choose the right ones, and anyway I forgot what ones I said already. It’s not pleasant.

This may surprise you, but even in states where it’s not legal, people smoke all the time. Every day you probably interact with people who are high. You get punches thrown at you a lot?

(Raises hand) … here to report the identical experience, though it was many years ago.

Probably the same risks of smoking tobacco: the smell, the money, the health risks and the fire danger.

Heh. As a resident of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, I’m still relying on the guy in the parking lot, hallowed be his name.

I smoke daily. When people ask me about “paranoia” or other negative aspects of my drug of choice, I explain how enjoyable paranoia can be. If I’m at a park, high af, and a cop approaches me to ask where I got the hat I’m wearing, I experience some paranoia. But I enjoy it. I know that I’ve been smoking excellent weed, and I know that paranoia is one effect, so I go with it. I discuss my hat, where I got it, alternative brands, etc. I live for the intensity of situations like that because I know I can handle them. :cool:

First, this legalization question is one where I sit squarely in the middle. I am persuaded one way and then the other. I have no preconceived bias on this issue at all, except I cast a wary eye when I hear from the pro-legalization side that marijuana is nothing short of a miracle cure for all ailments and afflictions. It seems that many of those making that claim have none of these illnesses, but coincidentally I guess, smoke it recreationally.

In any event, I do realize that people break the law. People possess illegal drugs, illegal guns, etc. However, you must realize that when a thing goes from being illegal to being legal, there will be an order of magnitude more people who engage in it because most people are generally law abiding.

For example, before casino gambling was legal in this state, you could go to underground gaming parlors if you knew someone with the secret password. Today, you just drive up to a casino. A soccer mom will be unlikely to participate in the former, but will do the latter. Likewise, the soccer mom won’t go to Jimmy the pot dealer in Kroger’s parking lot, but might want to get loose on Friday night if she can legally buy it at the dispensary.

Sure, but comparing pot to underground gambling parlors? Come on. Over 50% of Americans have tried pot. 50%!!! It’s already everywhere. Maybe legalized pot will be everywhere + 1, but I think there’s enough smokers in general circulation on any given day that we can already make some informed opinions of their behavior, and they really don’t seem to be causing any trouble.