The ‘Marijuana Maintenance’ Program?

Not for me

by Mark H.

A couple of months ago a young man asked me to be his sponsor after a meeting at Uptown House. I said sure.

“How long have you been off alcohol and drugs?” I asked.

“My girlfriend and I haven’t drank in two weeks, but we still both smoke pot,” he replied.

“I don’t know anybody who has stayed sober on the ‘Marijuana Maintenance’ program,” I responded. I never saw that young man again.

Some consider talking about drug use in an AA setting is an outside issue, best dealt with elsewhere. But for me, however, booze and drugs were always intertwined. Booze led me to drugs and drugs would lead me back to booze every time. There is no line between the two for this alchie. Smoking pot led me to use other drugs too.

I often hear it put this way in AA. “How long have you been off mind altering substances?” This question makes no distinction between peoples’ drugs of choice (alcohol being considered a ‘drug’ in this instance.)

Its a confusing time for cross addicted folks, especially newcomers I imagine, but for us old potheads too. Pot is becoming legal all across our nation and, in fact, it is legal in the nation to our north (Canada).

My wife has worked in the mental health field for decades, she works with these folks face-to-face every day. She tells me the worst drug for those with mental illness is pot.

The debate over legalizing pot continues, but legalization is winning in most places. The worst drug of them all, of course, has been legal in this nation since 1933: booze. It remains society’s most destructive by any measure, including the on-going opioid epidemic.

I hope that young man who asked me to be his sponsor is still going to AA somewhere and has found sobriety….from all mind altering substances.

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