Pot, Not Dangerous Drugs, Best for My Autistic Son

By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted May 12, 2009 4:19 PM CDT
A Hindu devotee puffs marijuana.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Marie Myung-Ok Lee gives marijuana to her 9-year-old autistic son and has no intention of stopping, she writes for doubleX, a new Slate spinoff for women. It’s working to calm him and curb his aggressive behaviors, writes Lee, who had her own misgivings initially. “I was already the weirdo mom who packed lunches with organic kale and kimchi,” she writes. “Now, I’d be the mom who shunned the standard operating procedure and gave her kid pot instead.”

But medical marijuana was an easy choice compared with other drugs prescribed to children with autism, like Risperdal, responsible for “45 pediatric deaths” between 2000 and 2004. “The drugs that our insurance would pay for,” Lee writes, “pose real risks to children.” Pot may be “clouded by stigma” but at worst it’s harmless. And in her home state of Rhode Island, Lee is “following the law—and the Hippocratic oath.” She’s doing no harm, she writes, and “sticking with the weed.”