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Coming Out Of The Marijuana Closet

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Coming Out Of The Marijuana Closet.Are You In ‘The Marijuana Closet’?

Marijuana is a taboo subject to some members of society. As a result, there are many marijuana consumers that limit the amount of people they admit their marijuana use to. For instance all of my friends and family know that I consume marijuana, but it’s not something I told all of my co-workers at my last job due to employment policies that would fire me if my marijuana consumption became known. I have never looked at it like I’m ashamed to be a marijuana consumer. I just have always felt that I am protecting dumb people from themselves by not telling them about my marijuana consumption, as they will no doubt react in a harsh, illogical way.

A case study would be legendary Olympic athlete Michael Phelps. Michael Phelps won 14 Gold medals (16 medals overall) for the United States so far in his life, with possibly more to come. Michael Phelps was considered as an American hero by all of society until pictures surfaced of him taking an Olympic sized bong hit. He was labeled an outcast by conservative America, condemned by parents as being a bad example for children, and lost numerous endorsement deals. This is the same guy that up until that picture surfaced, was considered the standard of what American awesomeness looked like in the new century. The fact that one marijuana bong hit picture can outweigh a lifetime of achievement at a world record level in some people’s eyes is disgusting to me.

There are countless people that I worked with that knew me as a hard worker, as someone that they could rely on to get the job done, and that I was a very articulate communicator. Unfortunately, their perceptions would change if they knew I consumed marijuana, despite the fact that I still possess all of the qualities that they thought made me a good person. That’s just how strong reefer madness is in some circles of society. It’s sad and unfortunate, but it is what it is.

I know that my experience is pretty standard for most marijuana consumers. Marijuana consumers encounter uneducated, biased people everyday that are easier to avoid than confront. Have you ever argued with someone that is ‘gone off the reefer madness?’ There’s absolutely no way to change their minds. I conserve my energy by avoiding people like that and looking for people that are on the fence about the issue. I love ‘coming out of the marijuana closet’ when I talk to those type of people.

I like to talk to ‘luke warm’ marijuana supporters that I meet at a workplace or some other settings, and I encourage others to do so as often as you feel comfortable with. These type of citizens, which are a majority of America, generally agree that marijuana prohibition has failed, and that there is a lot of false hype that has kept marijuana illegal for so long. I once heard Radical Russ Belville refer to a study that stated three in four people support ending marijuana prohibition, but only one in four thinks their neighbor agrees. These people are just waiting for someone to bring the issue to a personal level, as some likely don’t smoke marijuana themselves. However, if you are known to them as a hard worker, that you are someone that they can depend on, and you can articulate your stance on marijuana to them, chances are you will sway them from being on the fence to supplying their signature for a marijuana reform initiative or more.

Have you ‘come out of the marijuana closet?’ If so, do you have any tips for others that are hesitant to ‘come out of the marijuana closet?’ Can you elaborate in the comments section about your experience so that others can benefit from your knowledge? If you haven’t ‘come out of the marijuana closet,’ why not? Is it due to employment reasons? Fear of backlash from family or friends? Are you in a relationship with someone that you don’t want to know about your marijuana consumption? Some other reason? I look forward to what readers have to say.

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11 Comments

  1. I’m still in the closet. :(  I hate it, despise it, wish I could come out and speak freely about my usage, but I’ve learned the hard way that I can’t.  I’m stuck in a suburbia hell and on top of that I’m a parent, I dare not let it known that my cannabis usage has made my world a more wonderful place.  Despite the fact that I’ve dealt with depression for half a lifetime and the antidepressants do nothing but make it worse and cannabis has brought me around to enjoy my family, my friends, MY LIFE again!  But it’s illegal and I can’t lose everything I’ve worked so hard for in this life due to the ignorance of others.  It makes me all the more thankful for the people who CAN make their voices heard, I feel as though they speak up for everyone who can’t do so just yet.

  2. Froggymom04, I completely sympathize with your situation.  My mom went through a similar one in the overwhelmingly conservative –and somewhat redneck — Southern Maryland.

    I’m lucky enough not only to live in a place where marijuana usage is much more “acceptable” than in most of the country, Colorado, but also to be able to make the life choices that allow me to tell everyone that I smoke.  I’ve talked about it to family members, friends, teachers, even co-workers when I couldn’t be drug tested.  I’m very proud that I get high, both medically (I too have dealt with depression, as well as bipolar disorder, throughout my life) and recreationally, and I tell everyone that I can.

  3.     Protect gay rights, protect women’s rights, be politically correct, don’t discriminate, equality for all . . . except those evil bastards who smoke marijuana. Lets imprison & shame them all! Lets allow rapists & murders an early release for good behavior. We need to make room for those evil doers. WTF!?! 

  4. Love the analogy, that’s exactly how I feel, What’s weird is medical marijuana rode off the backs of the homosexual community in California because of A.I.D.S and because the world hasn’t collapse because of it I think America in a whole is rethinking “drugs are bad” position, especially on pot. The irony here is when at the time America was mostly anti-homosexual. I think the people in a whole can accept another person for whom they choose to love but just avoid the topic, same goes with pot. Smoke all you want but don’t come to work saying “Yah’ Mon’ “. I’m in the closet but only because of the job but I think that’s the only thing that keeps people back, money.

  5. eating_sunshine on

    I’m in the Ron Paul camp in regards to marijuana. I don’t use, but am a huge supporter of legalization. Not even I can come out of the closet to everyone. BTW, very well written article, I wish I had your talent. 

  6. I have a dream of a public service campaign where all high profile, succesful pot smokers come out of the pot closet. Imagine Richard Branson smiling into the camera while standing on the launch strip of his new space venture and saying “yes, I smoke weed. With my son.” Followed by Willie Nelson, Oliver Stone, Brad Pitt….Imagine the roster of Producers, film makers, writers. musicians, artists, politicians, athletes ( good call on Phelps, but there are so many more). A good friend of mine is a Hollywood director and video artist, a family man, a conservative jew, and a pot head. Smoking is an integral part of the creative process for him and he still gets put at the helm of very large and interesting projects. So that’s my dream, public service ads for pot featuring every succesful pot smoker out there. That would be almost everyone.

  7. Great idea, Duke… there is great depth of field in the ranks of celebrity supporters of legalization! I was excited to find the list of the 50 most influential marijuana users posted by the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP).
    Seems the Drug War folks have been successful in creating this solid wall of social stigma which a few aggressive control types continue to use to project their own “moral” beliefs onto marijuana consumers to drive them underground. Bullies…
    Best way to stop a bully is to make their efforts unsuccessful. If we all live loud and proud their own over reactions and hysteria will work against them as they quickly show their own shallow depth of knowledge regarding the facts. Many of the Drug Warriors have already started to lose their shield of credibility…

    Hey… what if everyone working at a job where you have to urine test started looking for jobs which don’t test? Market economics… see if some of these companies don’t change their position re. urine testing as they watch much of their top talent make a conscious decision to go work for their competition!

  8. I’m out and I’m proud. I am a strong proponent of medical marijuana and suggest it for many health problems (vaping or eating…not smoking. Nobody smokes medicine) I have been a recreational smoker for 45 years. Sometimes I smoke regularly and sometimes I don’t depending on what’s going on. I’ve successfully raised children, had a high level career, Have run my own business for 13 years, had a book published last year with another one in the works. I am successful and at 61 take NO chemical medicine. I use herbs and healthy living choices to keep me healthy and so far…it’s working. I would not have survived points in my life with out access to marijuana. It has kept me sane and healthy. don’t drink alcohol and never have. It never led to worse drug use…although I tried a thing or two. I am a child of the 60s and 70s after all.

    There have been times in my life when I chose not to smoke for a period of time (2+ years once or twice). It was not a problem although I missed it. I’ve used it to help me get through menopause, times of depression, divorce and tragedy, chronic back pain, intestinal problems, and insomnia…I don’t use it when I have a cold, headache, or other ailments it doesn’t seem to help. I smoke it for the same reason people have a beer or glass of wine. I don’t smoke it around children, in a vehicle, while operating heavy equipment, etc. My mental abilities seem to be just fine. A little forgetful but who isn’t. That’s why I have a smart phone, and a tablet, and a laptop…

    For many years it was unspoken. If you knew me for very long you probably figured out that I use marijuana. I have always been a strong proponent for medical marijuana. It’s wonderful that there are ways in some places for people to get it without as much fear of reprisal. Nobody should have to fight for medicine. Doubt me? Watch “Weed” on CNN. There is a great book called “The Pot Book”. Read it. It is incredible the demonization this plant has been through.

    Now that I’m older I am much more outspoken to other people about it. I’m not hiding it any more. I’m not going to do anything stupid but I’m not hiding it. If that’s the reason somebody decides I’m not the awesome human I seem to be, so be it. That’s on them. Not on me.

    I continue to be hopeful that it will be legal in my lifetime. I can’t wait.

  9. Some very nice-looking people sat down at a bench with me and some friends at the recent hot-air balloon fiesta in New Mexico. I guess since I talk funny, they asked where we were from, and of course, I reciprocated. They said they were from Colorado.

    So, I’m like, from Colorado? You don’t say! Well, I hear about some wonderful goings-on over there in Colorado, ya’ll have legalized, that’s great! The couple both bowed their heads in embarrassment and said, yes, but they had been on the losing side. Well now, what was I to say? My friends were embarrassed, the couple was embarrassed, everyone seemed, well, embarrassed.

    So I made some off-hand comment about cannabis being the same as alcohol, and started talking about mountains. My friends and I left shortly thereafter. I laughed about it, and maybe someday my friends will too. :-)

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