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Is Weed a Coping Mechanism for Bisexuals?

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While we have made remarkable progress, it is safe to say that 2023 is still a difficult time for gay people and their basic human right to exist, let alone flourish. And so, coping mechanisms are necessary, whether they be family support systems, talk therapy, or, well, weed.

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It’s recent but short but informative study found that individuals who identify as bisexual use cannabis more frequently than their counterparts of other sexual orientations.

The study, titled “The Pot at the End of the Rainbow,” pulled from survey data from 10 universities and analyzed the responses of 4,700 college students aged 18-30.

According to the report, abstinence was one of the leading motives for cannabis use among this group of participants.

The data also showed higher rates of anxiety, depression, cannabis use disorder and suicide risk within this demographic. Before we dive into the analysis, it’s important to note that all data collected was self-reported by the participants.

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Still, the report highlights two important issues for young people right now. First, weed isn’t just a hobby for many people—it’s a way to self-soothe.

However, the researchers were concerned that their bisexual participants reported that they use not only flowers and foods, but also concentrates, which are more potent. Many health professionals would argue that high THC takes a coping mechanism from self-soothing to self-medicating.

Second, this study highlights the unique mental health challenges faced by those who identify as bisexual. bisexual persons exist in a complex space Where they face the stigma of being queer, but often feel isolated from LGBTQ spaces and issues. This combined pressure and isolation result in higher adverse mental health outcomes.

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Illustration: Benjamin Curry/HuffPost

biphobia is real, and so are mental health conditions that result directly from stereotyping and invalidation of identity from members of the straight and LGBTQ+ communities.

And because there isn’t enough conversation or support about people who don’t fully identify as gay or straight, life can feel isolating and scary. Hopefully, this research—which purports to be about weed but is really about mental health—can be an introduction to a deeper dive.

On a lighter note, the data also found a second major motive for cannabis use, which many genders gravitate toward, to be far less depressing and more joyful. They call it “growth”.

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“Growth is about expanding one’s awareness, being more open to experience, and being more creative, so maybe it all comes back to openness,” said Carrie Cutler, assistant professor of psychology and senior author of the study.

At the end of the day, if this study teaches us anything, it’s that we need to support each other, continue fighting for the rights of queer people, and demystify weed use so that Adults can safely indulge. Puff, puff, preach, researchers!

(translate to tag) lgbtq

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