Friday, June 27, 2008
Crazy Over Cannabis
The link between marijuana and psychosis
At the end of last year I had a conversation with a woman whose husband had recently been institutionalized. When she began to describe her husband's behavior, I inwardly reacted by thinking: "She's probably just bitter." Except that her children agreed with her assessment of their father's craziness, and it was based on at least a decade of accelerating brokenness and dysfunctional patterns.
The family's assessment of the father was not dark, brooding, or vengeful but a sort of lighthearted we-give-up weariness. Since I had read an article on cannabis and its impact on mental stability, I referred to it, and she immediately affirmed her husband's habit of using cannabis.
So it came as something of a shock that a friend of mine, so soon after being privy to the above revelation, confided in me that his wife was also inclined to periods of "craziness." I asked him if she'd used cannabis, and he responded that she had and told me that when she was a supermodel (winning the same modeling competitions as South African actress, Charlize Theron).
She had graduated from cannabis to the designer drugs as well. The result, he told me, was that even in the safety of marriage, and the conventional domesticity of being a young mother, his wife would sometimes watch TV (without it being on), or have conversations with invisible people, or burst out laughing for no apparent reason. It reached the point where they agreed that she'd spend some time in hospital to aid a recovery and treatment of the psychosis.