VS. DO DRUGS (SOME OF THEM)

The climate is changing, right-wing extremists have mobilized a political army of wannabe fascists, and you're going to be in debt for the rest of your life. So why did you avoid drugs and alcohol in high school? Was it so you could work hard and focus and get into the first-choice school that would secure a stable and fulfilling future? Oh boy. Okay.

There was no reason to avoid smoking weed in the woods when you were 14; there is no such thing as a guaranteed, stable, and fulfilling future. But forget it—now that you're in college, you've got other things to do.

Shit. You're about to experience some things that will get you higher and feel more intense than any of the crappy Molly you scored off that one suburban rich kid who thinks he's got the hookup. You will encounter interpersonal challenges that make you question the very foundations of your being. And you'll need to be awake and present for both.

Do you really want to be one of those dinguses who gets alcohol poisoning within the first two weeks of college because you refused experimentation when you were in high school? Do you want to score some bad acid, take too much because you're a total idiot, and have a nervous breakdown when you're away from the safety of your long-standing social networks? Do you want to discover that you have a mental illness that manifests itself in your early 20s, but try and pacify it with drinking until you drop out of school?

I'm not saying avoid everything. If you haven't discovered your limits already, discover them and respect them. But if you think false highs are the best things about being in college, you're missing out on the real shit. More importantly, when the moment arrives—and for everyone, it will arrive—when you haven't left your dorm room for days because you're too depressed to get out of bed, or you're getting panic attacks, or you feel totally out of control, and you're going to need to summon the one person on this planet, the only person on this planet, who will always be there for you, no matter what.

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That person is you. And if you're not up to the challenge of taking care of yourself when you need it most, you're still the best you've got. You'll need to learn sooner, rather than later, how to do it.

(P.S. Yes, sex can be really great while high. But pot doesn't fix bad sex. Figure out how to have good sex first.)