Epilepsy by Sylvia Douglas
I am a 48 year old woman and have been smoking marijuana for 27 years in order to control epilepsy. I was diagnosed with epilepsy at 5 months of age and was fed my first Phenobarbital at that time. I was prescribed dilantin at about 13 years of age. I am very intelligent but did poorly at school, and as a teenager had a big problem with taking my medication on a schedule. As a result I had very little control over my seizures. At the age of 21 it was suggested to me by a young Dr. that I knew to try smoking marijuana to try and control my seizures rather than taking the phenobarb/dilantin cocktail. I tried it out and was reborn. I got my life on track; I started to feel emotions in a way that I never had before as I withdrew altogether from the barbiturates and dilantin, and have never looked back. A few years ago I tried to stop smoking marijuana mostly because of social pressure, and within a short time had a seizure again. I told my Dr. what had happened; he immediately sent me for an EEG and then prescribed me tegretal (which has horrible side effects). I asked for a prescription for marijuana and was flatly denied. I pointed it out to the Dr. that all his denial was going to do was keep me being a criminal in the eyes of the law, and that it was not hard for me to procure marijuana any time that I wanted to do so. I am continuing to fight the fight to get the legal right to smoke marijuana, but there are more doors closed than open in the pursuit. I feel that smoking marijuana gave me the ability to function normally for the first time in my life. My parents were amazed in the difference, and they became my biggest advocates. I was a better wife, mother and worker as a result of the change in my personality. I was no longer zoned out and unapproachable. What more can I say?