The daily Astorian. (Astoria, Or.) 1961-current, June 11, 2019, Page B4, Image 12

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Taming fearful thoughts
Medical pot takes hit when weed legal for all
Dear Annie: My wife more desirable job.
and I have three perfect
grandchildren, ages 1, 5 ing on the referrals that
and 7. We love watch- you don’t have, or the
ing them at least one day idea that you’re not good
a week. Their parents are enough for the job, focus
caring and careful. But on your strengths. Out of
occasionally when I am the 100-plus applicants,
just about to fall asleep, one has to get the job,
I have “waking dreams” and the question is, “Why
that the most horrible not you?” That is a ques-
things happen to the kids. tion you have to ask your
Why? I am able to
self-esteem. You
push these disturb-
deserve to have
ing thoughts out of
your dream job,
my brain in a few
and you will land
seconds. I don’t
it once you shake
want to pay a psy-
off a negative
chiatrist for the
answer. — Wor-
Dear Annie: I
ried in Kentucky
am writing about
Wor- ANNIE LANE “Passionless Part-
ried in Ken-
Syndicate Inc.
tucky: While I
man who loves
admire your abil-
the woman who
ity to push those disturb- nursed him back to health
ing thoughts out of your but lacks passion during
mind, nonetheless, that sex.
which we resist, per-
The guy’s suspicion is
sists. It might be benefi - right: The passion, if not
cial to talk to your wife there now, will never be.
or a counselor about You can fool yourself and
these thoughts. Some- think it will get better,
times just acknowledg- but it ain’t gonna happen.
ing and talking about your Simple. Grin and bear it.
fears make your fears
There’s a statement
lessen. If you try to go at I saw once, which is: “I
it alone, you will continue can think of a million rea-
to suffer.
sons to leave my wife,
It could be a sign of but then I look for only
generalized anxiety or a ONE reason to stay.” He
form of OCD, but I would needs to realize what’s
consult with a profes- important and that some-
sional. In the meantime, times what’s important is
keep up the good work unachievable.
with your grandkids.
The message of the
They are fortunate to have Serenity Prayer is: “God,
you and your wife.
grant me the power to know
Dear Annie: I’m seek- the difference between
ing a new job. Pretty things I can change versus
much all the jobs I’ve had things I can’t.”
have been facilitated by
There are probably
referrals (I know someone hundreds of situations
who knows someone). So that could be substituted
I’m pessimistic about my for the word “passion-
chances of landing some- less,” but whatever word
thing in a place where I you use — money, sex,
don’t know anyone. How in-laws, children, what-
can I make myself stand ever — if it ain’t there
now, it ain’t gonna be. All
These jobs I’m apply- the therapy in the world
ing for have 100-plus won’t help. It may help
applicants, and thanks you have a deeper under-
to imposter syndrome, I standing of the problem,
don’t feel all that qualifi ed but you’ve got to solve it.
to begin with. My motiva- — Realistic Expectations
tion is lacking, though I
Dear Realistic: Thank
am committed to the end you for your interest-
goal. What should I do to ing perspective. It sounds
nip the bad juju and fi ght like you have experienced
the good fi ght? — Jaded similar things as “Pas-
sionless Partners.” How-
Dear Jaded Job- ever, people can and do
Seeker: One way to make change in some instances.
yourself stand out is to Otherwise, we would all
walk around with a chip be doomed to fi rst impres-
on your shoulder, which is sions. Life is about hope
what you are doing. I hope and love and change, and
you are aware of just how those can be achieved
negative your perspec- much more easily with
tive is and what it will do a positive attitude and a
to sabotage your fi nding a good therapist.
Associated Press
states legalize pot for all
adults, long-standing medi-
cal marijuana programs take
a big hit, in some cases losing
more than half their registered
patients in just a few years,
according to a data analysis
by the Associated Press.
Much of the decline comes
from consumers who, ill or
not, got medical cards in their
states because it was the only
way to buy marijuana legally
and then discarded them
when broader legalization
arrived. But for people who
truly rely on marijuana to con-
trol ailments such as nausea
or cancer pain, the arrival of
so-called recreational canna-
bis can mean fewer and more
expensive options.
Robin Beverett, a 47-year-
old disabled Army veteran,
said she resumed taking a
powerful prescription mood
stabilizer to control her anxi-
ety and PTSD when the cost
of her medical marijuana
nearly tripled after California
began general sales. Before
last year, an eighth of an ounce
of dry marijuana fl ower cost
her $35. Now it’s approaching
$100, Beverett said.
“It’s ridiculous. The prices
are astronomical,” said Bev-
erett, who moved to Sacra-
mento from Texas because
medical marijuana is illegal
there. “Going to the dispen-
sary is just out of the question
if you’re on any kind of fi xed
It’s a paradox playing out
nationwide as more states take
the leap from care-centered
medical programs to recre-
ational models aligned with
a multibillion-dollar global
States see a “massive exo-
dus” of medical patients when
they legalize marijuana for all
adults — and then, in many
cases, the remaining ones
struggle, said David Man-
gone, director of government
affairs for Americans for Safe
Cost also goes up, a prob-
lem that’s compounded
because many of those who
stay in medical programs are
low-income and rely on Social
Security disability, he said.
The AP estimates if those
states were added the num-
ber would increase by about
1 million.
Pushed aside
AP Photo/Gillian Flaccus
Scott Donnelly, assisted by his wife and licensed caregiver,
Vicki Poppen, leaves Western Oregon Dispensary in Sherwood
after buying medical marijuana to treat muscle spasms
caused by his multiple sclerosis.
shops fell from 400 to two,
and hundreds of growers
who contracted with individ-
ual patients to grow specifi c
strains walked away.
Now, some of the 28,000
medical patients left are
struggling to fi nd affordable
medical marijuana products
they’ve relied on for years.
While the state is awash in
dry marijuana fl ower that’s
dirt cheap, the specialized
oils, tinctures and potent edi-
bles used to alleviate severe
illnesses can be harder to fi nd
and more expensive to buy.
“Lots of people have
started trying to fi gure out
how to make these concen-
trates and edibles themselves
in their kitchen,” said Travis
MacKenzie, who runs TJ’s
Gardens, which provides free
medical cannabis to children
with epilepsy. “There are
things that we don’t really
want people to do at home,
but the market conditions are
such that people are trying to
do more at home.”
The numbers compiled by
the AP through public records
requests and publicly avail-
able documents provide a
snapshot of the evolution of
marijuana as more states —
Michigan was last in the door,
and Illinois is about to follow
— legalize pot for all adults.
Ten states have both med-
ical and recreational markets.
Four of them — Oregon,
Nevada, Colorado, Alaska —
have the combination of an
established recreational mar-
ketplace and data on medi-
cal patients. The AP analysis
found all four saw a drop in
medical patients after broader
In Alaska, the state with
the second-biggest decline,
medical cardholders dropped
by 63% after recreational
sales began in 2016, followed
by Nevada with nearly 40%
since 2017 and Colorado
with 19% since 2014.
The largest of all the
legal markets, California,
doesn’t keep data on medical
patients, but those who use it
say their community has been
in turmoil since recreational
pot debuted last year. That’s
partly because the state ended
unlicensed cannabis cooper-
atives where patients shared
their homegrown pot for free.
There is limited scien-
tifi c data backing many of the
health claims made by med-
ical marijuana advocates,
and the U.S. government
still classifi es cannabis in
any form as a controlled sub-
stance like LSD and cocaine.
Still, the popularity of
medical pot is rising as
more states legalize it. There
are 33 such states, includ-
ing the politically conserva-
tive recent additions of Okla-
homa and Utah. Oklahoma
has among the more liberal
guidelines for use and has
approved more than 100,000
patient licenses since voters
backed legalization last June.
Getting a precise nation-
wide count of medical
patients is impossible because
California, Washington and
Maine don’t keep data. How-
ever, absent those states, the
AP found at the end of last
year nearly 1.4 million peo-
ple were active patients in a
medical marijuana program.
As more states legal-
ize marijuana for all adults,
some who have been using
it medically are feeling
In Michigan, where med-
ical marijuana has been legal
for over a decade, the cre-
ation of a new licensing sys-
tem for medical dispensaries
has sparked court challenges
as the state prepares for the
advent of general marijuana
sales later this year. A cancer
patient there fi led a federal
lawsuit this month, alleging
the slow licensing pace has
created a shortage of the med-
ical marijuana products she
needs to maintain her weight
and control pain.
In Washington, medical
patients feel they were pushed
aside when that state merged
its medical and general-use
markets, which also is what’s
happening in California.
Los Angeles dispensary
owner Jerred Kiloh sells
medical and recreational
marijuana and said those
markets are quickly becom-
ing one, since few companies
are going to produce products
for a vanishing group of cus-
tomers. He said his medical
business has dipped to 7% of
overall sales and is dropping
month to month.
“It’s going to be gone,”
said Kiloh, president of the
LA trade group United Can-
nabis Business Association.
In Oregon, regulators are
struggling to fi nd a path that
preserves the state’s trailblaz-
ing low-cost medical pot pro-
gram while tamping down
on a still-thriving black mar-
ket. A special state commis-
sion formed to oversee the
market transition put out a
report earlier this year that
found affordability and lack
of access are major hurdles
for Oregon’s patients.
“Patients have needs.
Consumers have wants,”
said Anthony Taylor, a med-
ical marijuana advocate who
sits on the Oregon Cannabis
Commission. “Patients are in
crisis right now.”
More expensive
In Oregon, where the
medical program shrank the
most following recreational
legalization, nearly two-
thirds of patients gave up
their medical cards, the AP
found. As patients exited, the
market followed: The num-
ber of medical-only retail
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