COLORADO: As the new year approached, Courtney smoked marijuana for the first time, after a lifetime of being against it.
“I never smoked before,” said Courtney, a young mother who wants to be identified by first name only. “I always said, ‘I’m a good kid, I’m not going to do that because it’s illegal.’ ”
But she was around marijuana a lot because her husband has smoked it almost daily for 14 years. And she began to wonder whether it could help with her persistent health issues, including chronic pain and loss of appetite. So she decided to try what she had long avoided.
“I cannot eat otherwise,” Courtney said.
The rapid changes in Colorado’s marijuana laws have caused many people across the state to re-evaluate their relationship with cannabis.
Those who are curious about marijuana and plan to try it include people who have never used it, as well as those who smoked decades ago, before marriage and kids. They say they now plan to buy some marijuana because it’s easy, convenient and legal.
But the continuing stigma surrounding marijuana use — not to mention the very real risks to their jobs — keeps many cannabis newcomers from stepping fully into the light. A 52-year-old man who plans to try pot for the first time didn’t want any part of his name published.