Why We Need To End The Stigma And Legalize Marijuana Everywhere

by Kristen Day
Originally Published: 
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Marijuana has always been a somewhat taboo conversation, especially among parents. So, I thought I would share a little personal testimony on the subject.

About 18 years ago, I began experiencing horrible “headaches” (this was before there had been much discussion in the medical field regarding migraines, and chronic migraine syndrome). I would lie in my bed writhing in pain, not knowing what was wrong, or why I felt the way I did. My parents took me to the doctor, I underwent MRI’s and was given the all clear, with no form of treatment provided.

A few years later, after struggling with these debilitating migraines, I returned to the doctor and was prescribed Imitrex. Which worked great for the first three times I used it, and then my body became immune to the drug. I was once again without a viable treatment for pain that caused me to vomit and basically be bedridden for anywhere from 5-12 hours a day, usually at least 4-5 times a month.

In my late teens/early twenties, I went through a trial and error system of trying every drug possible to battle my migraines. I was given daily anti-depressants (commonly prescribed for migraine sufferers, even when depression is a non-issue), which proved not to do anything except make me feel like a zombie trying to navigate through my days in a fog. I tried numerous drugs in the “triptan” family, along with muscle relaxers, and various antihistamines. Nothing worked. And not only did they not work, but I suffered side effects such as dizziness, extreme exhaustion, and excess vomiting with every single medication that was prescribed. I was told that I had “failed out” of all available medications.

I turned to marijuana. I have always been a recreational marijuana user, and after doing research I decided to try it out at my next migraine onset. And, it worked! I went back to my doctor and told her what I had found. She recommended that I continue to self-medicate with marijuana, but with the difficulty of getting a medical card, the only option for me was to do so illegally until I ventured back into the workforce (I am currently a stay-at-home-mom).

Marijuana does not always work for my migraines, but it almost always eases the pain, or at least makes it so that I am not vomitting throughout the entire migraine episode. The stigma of marijuana being a “gateway” to hard drugs and various stereotypes about it is ludicrous. These misconceptions and stereotypes need to end.

I am a stay-at-home-mom who relies on it often to get through my pain, as well as using it as a wind down at the end of a long day once the kids are in bed. There should be no difference in judgment between the mother who casually sips on a glass (or 2) of wine after a trying day, and the one who decides to light up a blunt, joint, or bowl to relax.

I urge you to do your research on this topic, to make an informed, unbiased opinion, and then show up at the polls when it comes time to vote.

End the stigma. Legalize marijuana everywhere.

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