Surviving The Holidays: With Cannabis

(Photo by Zackary Drucker as part of Broadly’s Gender Spectrum Collection.)

“Sitting through a family meal, or visiting through an entire weekend or week, can be challenging enough, but what happens if you are not yet in a position to be true to your authentic self as you make your way through the meal or the week?” (PFLAG)

This holiday season, we explore ways to cope with holiday cheer—when it doesn’t come so easy to someone who’s queer.

Whether coming together with chosen family, re-visiting family of origin, spending the day with strangers or alone: often, the season is a stark reminder that we don’t all have what others do.

Acceptance. Understanding.

Even an invitation.

In order to deal with these stressors—and the anxiety and depression that so often come with them—many of us find success turning to the “herbal solution.”

Luckily, in California, we can!

Cannabis is a viable option to relieving anxiety and stress. Even if just to loosen up a bit for those awkward conversations, pronoun corrections, and glowing forced grins.

Weedmaps Medical Adviser and Medical Director of Canna-Centers, Dr. Bonni Goldstein weighs in on the benefits of cannabis during the holiday season:

“Many of the phytocannbinoids, the medicinal compounds in cannabis, have known anti-anxiety and anti-depressant effects. The two most common known phytocannabinoids, THC and CBD, both can lower stress and improve mood. Of course the proper dosing is paramount to achieving this result. These and another plant cannabinoid called CBG (cannabigerol) are known to decrease depression. Anyone interested in these compounds should seek medical advice, especially if taking other medications for these conditions. And certainly, when trying a cannabis product that you have never tried before, start low dose and try it at home first. It’s no fun having unwanted side effects when at a holiday party!”

If your friends and family are also cannabis consumers, cannabis use around the holiday season can also be a helpful bonding agent. Allowing for those candid one-on-one check-ins with a supportive ally, or a circle of family from all backgrounds taking in a good vibe.

If the one thing you have in common is sharing a toke, it can be one step closer to sharing understanding of each other and our varying worldviews.

“The idea that you can find understanding and acceptance within a community who has the same beliefs and values is an extremely powerful one that both cannabis consumers and the LGBTQ community can, and should, always come back to.”

This reminder comes from Nic Juarez, Culture Editor at Weedmaps.

Nic also shares a few LGBTQ+-specific companies we can all be supporting year-round in order to continue the rich history and development of cannabis and LGBTQ+ people. Not just around the holiday season.

“Brands like Peak Extracts, Pride Wellness, and the People’s Dispensary are just some of the brands and retailers not only providing products for cannabis consumers, but working to provide safe spaces and empowerment for the queer communities they serve. These brands deserve our attention not only during Pride month, but throughout the entire year.”

To learn more about cannabis options near you, as well as tips on surviving the holiday season as an LGBTQ+ person: visit Weedmaps and PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) for further information.

Happy Holidays, LGBTQ+ Los Angeles. With the help of cannabis, may all your mayhem turn to slay-hem!