Like many people, I have made a lot of personal discoveries during the pandemic. One of the biggest bombshells was finding out that I’m autistic – and I probably also have ADHD on top of that. I’m about to turn 27, so that’s not a discovery I expected to make. However, like many AFAB people (they/them, please), my neurodivergency went completely unnoticed. When you’re not a mute little boy with a train obsession no one seems to suspect a thing. Instead, I got funneled into the gifted program and then completely burned myself out trying to mask and fit into a world that isn’t made for people like me. I’m not going to talk too much about that, however. What I am going to chronicle here is my quest to discover the perfect cannabis strain to manage the symptoms I’ve been ignoring pretty much my whole life.
What I’m Looking For
So what exactly am I looking for when it comes to the ideal strain of cannabis? I’m looking for something that doesn’t sap my energy, dulls unpleasant sensory input, and lifts my mood. I’m going to be rating different strains based on how they make me feel and how well they help me deal with things like overstimulation, executive dysfunction, and autistic meltdowns and shutdowns.
If you’re familiar with cannabis, you probably know that the indica vs. sativa debate doesn’t really matter anymore. We’re going to be looking more closely at terpene profiles, which are more responsible for how a high affects you. Because I hate couch lock and sleepy highs, I am going to be steering away from indica-dominant strains, but I won’t be turning up my nose at hybrids. One of my absolute favorites, Sour Krypt OG, which I will be reviewing first, is an almost 50/50 hybrid.
It’s All About Terpenes
Terpenes are compounds found in plants that mostly affect the way they smell – but they can also offer other benefits.
Limonene, which gives the weed a pleasant citrus scent, is good for lifting your mood, and has anti-inflammatory properties. It’s great for anxiety, which means it helps a great deal with overstimulation, which often looks like a panic attack from the outside. This is the primary terpene I’ll be searching for. I’ve liked every limonene-dominant strain that I have tried.
Pinene, which gives weed a fresh, bright, piney aroma, is really good for attention, alertness, and improved memory. This makes it ideal for executive dysfunction, and problems with focusing that are common in ADHD. I always seek out strains that have a combination of pinene and limonene because that particularly combo seems ideal for neurodivergent people.
There are plenty of other terpenes with lots of other benefits, and I’ll be talking about them more as I rate strains. These are just the holy grail of terpenes for me, personally.
If you are neurodivergent and looking into self-medicating with cannabis, be sure to subscribe to this blog. I’ll be rating the strains I try and also providing information on the method of consumption, the terpene profile, and more.