When thinking of an escapist, you might think of a magician. He holds up and sheet and when he drops, he is gone. He has escaped! But, being an escapist has much more meaning and depth than some tricks.
Escapism is the tendency to seek distraction and relief from unpleasant realities, especially by seeking entertainment or engaging in fantasy and an escapist is someone who escapes from reality and retreats into a fantasy. I consider myself an escapist. Often I drift off during the day and think of certain scenarios and ideas. On the other hand, there are much more dangerous forms of escapism I want to cover.
“Escapism is a coping mechanism, using distraction from everyday stresses, such as work-related problems, bills, debt, family issues and so on. The individual seeks to avoid or escape from their problems by not fully addressing them, by distracting themselves with entertainment, by sinking into very low energy depression, and by abusing drugs and alcohol.” (The Science Behind Substance Abuse Escapism) You know what group of people need to cope with such problems, teens. “During high school many teenagers are overly stressed with a packed schedule of advanced classes and extracurricular activities. A lack of coping skills can lead us to seek out an artificial method of coping with stress. We then turn to drugs such as marijuana in order to relax.” (11 Real Reasons Why Teenagers Experiment with Drugs)
-Marijuana goes by a variety of nicknames such as: dope, grass, Mary Jane, pot, reefer, weed, skunk, chronic and ganja. Call it what you want, but marijuana has dangerous effects. Marijuana comes from the cannabis sativa plant. There is a chemical called delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in marijuana that makes it a mind-altering substance. People use marijuana in several ways. One way is rolling marijuana into a cigarette called a joint. Another way is emptying cigars and filling them with marijuana. Others smoke marijuana through a water pipe called a bong. Lastly, some people mix it with food (brownies are commonly used) or brew it into their tea.- (Types of Drugs)
Marijuana has a a few short-term effects such as hallucinations and delusions, paranoia, impaired judgment, perception and coordination, immediate “good feelings”, red eyes, and a rapid heart beat. The long term effects are the worst, such as memory and learning problems, addiction, withdrawal symptoms – including weight loss, irritability, sleep problems, mental health problems, and respiratory infections and bronchitis.
Marijuana is a common drug used by teens today. “A study found that 15.6 percent of eighth graders report using marijuana in their lifetimes, as well as 33.7 percent of 10th graders, and 44.4 percent of 12th graders. In the past month, 6.5 percent of eighth graders, 16.6 percent of 10th graders and 21.2 percent of 12th graders admitted to marijuana use.” (What Percentage of Teens Use Marijuana?) It is a mind altering drug and a dangerous form of escapism.