Baby boomers are bridging the cultural divide with their parents who were once adamantly opposed to marijuana. A new New York Times reports that middle aged medical marijuana patients are introducing cannabis to their parents as a viable alternative to common prescription medications:
Bryan, 46, a writer who lives in Illinois, began supplying his parents about five years ago, after he told them about his own marijuana use. When he was growing up, he said, his parents were very strict about illegal drugs.
“We would have grounded him,” said his mother, who is 72.
But with age and the growing acceptance of medical marijuana, his parents were curious. His father had a heart ailment, his mother had dizzy spells and nausea, and both were worried about Alzheimer’s disease and cancer. They looked at some research and decided marijuana was worth a try.
Medical professionals have seen use among their elderly patients growing.
“I think use of medical marijuana in older people is going to be much greater in the future,” said Dan G. Blazer, a professor of geriatric psychology at Duke University who has studied drug use and abuse among older people.
The rate for people ages 50 to 65 who said they smoke marijuana was nearly 4 percent — about six times as high as the 65-and-over crowd — suggesting that they were more likely to continue whatever patterns of drug use they had established in their younger years. In both age groups, the rate of marijuana abuse was very low, about 1 in 800.
Source: NYTimes 10/9/10