Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, a 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992 when he had a year sober. He's in his 27th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he sometimes disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Trying Marijuana?

An addict mother with a son in his early teens wants my opinion.

It seems that the son, who trusts her opinion, asked her a question about marijuana.

The question was did she think it was okay if he smoked it? She wondered what to tell him.

My opinion is that she should tell him it's a bad idea. And I gave her my reasons.

Even though I used heroin for over 35 years, marijuana was never my thing. But many of those I knew who went on to more addictive drugs started out with marijuana and alcohol at an early age. That's one reason.

The other reason is that the teenage brain isn't yet fully developed. There are studies that take a deep look at the risk of addiction among those who begin the drug at an early age. And the damage it can do.

My experience has been that most smokers eventually will have the opportunity to use stronger drugs. They may be at a party where the marijuana runs out. But someone there will have pills, or even cocaine, meth, or heroin.  A regular marijuana user may decide to try something different just to fit in.

Even though this mother may not be able to prevent him from trying it - if he already hasn't - my answer is still no. 

Life offers us enough challenges without taking a chance on becoming an addict.