It may be 2016, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t still a lot of backwards thinking when it comes to cannabis use. Sure, the argument to legalize marijuana is more popular than ever as more and more states open themselves to the medicinal benefits of this wonderful plant; and it’s certainly not taboo among many circles, including pop culture, where you’ll find plenty of films, TV shows, and songs all singing its praises; But for some reason, when it comes to thinking about moms and cannabis use, many folks are still getting all the wrong ideas.
Nowhere are the stereotypes about "what kind of people" use pot as dangerously incorrect and potentially damaging than when it comes to moms.
So many people often make terrible assumptions about pot-using moms, painting them as negligent parents who would rather involve themselves in criminal activity than watch Caillou with their kids (C’mon, though, how else do you sit through an hour of Caillou?). And even users (both with and without kids) often comment on how they just can’t correlate weed use with “good” parenting.
The fact is, though, that many moms benefit from occasional or even regular cannabis use, as it can help with everything from anxiety to painful cramps and other PMS symptoms. Hell, weed and women go hand in hand, so why would that change when you become a mom? So before you start judging THC-friendly mamas, see if you aren’t making any of these false assumptions:
Cannabis-Using Mom Are Not Lazy Parents
Look, if you’re a lazy person, you will be lazy regardless of whether or not you smoke (or vape! or eat!) cannabis. So yes, if you smoke and are already lazy, you might feel a little more stuck to your couch. But there are also plenty of athletic, high-energy parents who use cannabis and still manage to run marathons while pushing strollers, take their kids on hikes, or build the sets for their kid’s production of Sweeney Todd.
Nor Do They Spend Their Time Neglecting Their Kids
Some folks believe that smoking a little joint now and again might make you completely forget about your kids. Now, every person is different, and if you’re the type who frequently forgets to close the front door when you’re stoned, you might not want to indulge too often; Like, know yourself and set your limits accordingly. But I’ve also seen many mothers actually get more involved with their kids creative activities after hitting the vape, because pot makes building blocks and Play-Doh way, way, way more fun.
They Don’t Selfishly Spend All Their Money On Their “Habit”
Just because a mom buys herself a little herb doesn’t mean she’s not buying her kids the things they need. It's not like pot-loving moms are choosing to not pay for their daughter's field trip or their son's dance classes so they can keep their weed fund flush. Do we make these assumptions about all the moms who constantly talk about their need for wine once the baby’s put to bed? Or about moms who find that playing with their kids at the park is way more engaging and tolerable after downing a $6 latte? Why is cannabis the only mood-altering substance (which caffeine and alcohol totally are, make no mistake) whose consumption leads to such terrible judgment?
And They Definitely Don’t Try To Get Their Kids To Smoke With Them
I don’t think I’ve ever even heard of a mom who offered her 5 year old a bong hit, so this assumption needs to GTFO. Aside from the fact that responsible mamas know the potential damage cannabis can have on developing minds and bodies, most parents would not try to offer (let alone push) pot on their kids. The only exception to this might be for those parents searching desperately for something to help their sick kids, as CBD-rich cannabis continues to appear to be helpful for children with epilepsy. But obviously, now we're talking about highly specific, medical exceptions to a much more general rule wherein it's insane to fathom that pot-loving moms are trying to get all "cool mom" on their kids.
Nor Are They Going To Try To Sell Or Give Weed To Their Kid’s Friends
Seriously, why would anyone think this? And yet it seems there are parents out there who fear allowing their kids to play with children whose moms smoke will inevitably lead to their own kids buying pot. Yeah, no. Nancy Botwin is a TV character, people, and even she didn't even really smoke.
And Really, Weed Use Does Not Mean They Participate In Any Other Kind Of Illegal Or Illicit Activity
Yes, cannabis is still illegal in many states, but for most weed-loving mamas, that’s basically where they draw the line as far as breaking the (rather antiquated) law. Most pot smokers aren’t criminals, and once legalization gets underway everywhere, they won’t be breaking any laws, period.
They Don’t Just Leave It Lying Around, Either
I'm sorry, do you think all moms who consume pot are made of money? That they're just leaving their (probably very high-quality; grown-ass women don't play) weed all over the house for a kid to spill juice on or whatever? Responsible cannabis-using moms tend to put their medicine and related items in specific places, far away from children’s reach.
Pot-Smoking Moms Don’t Let Their Kids Do Whatever They Want
While a come-what-may relaxed attitude may be a stereotype of 420-friendly mothers, that doesn’t mean they lack the ability to discipline their own children. Plenty of moms who smoke know exactly how and when to let their kids know they’re out of line.
They Aren’t All Paranoid Either
Yeah, just because someone tokes a bit doesn’t mean they believe everyone’s out to get them, or that there are “conspiracies, man.” Cut that crap out.
And The Whole “Hippie” Persona Is Just That
Sure, lots of folks who wore tie-dye and peace signs smoked grass back in the '60s and '70s, and plenty still do. But you’ll also find folks who tote Michael Kors bags to work, who prefer playing poker to playing acoustic guitar, who play basketball, who do CrossFit... Basically, there’s no “one type” of pot smoker.
Just Because They Smoke Pot Doesn’t Mean They’re Into Other Drugs
Sure, people who become addicted to meth or heroin don’t often jump immediately from sobriety to life-ruining hard drugs. Most likely begin experimenting with alcohol, honestly. But most pro-marijuana moms mainly stick to pot. Why is that so hard to understand?
Moms Who Use Cannabis Aren’t “Dumb”
Despite the ill-informed assumptions people might make of marijuana-using moms, studies have now proven that cannabis does not kill brain cells, and that while heavy and frequent use may impair memory, the effects on short-term memory from light use aren’t enough to concern the medical community. Hell, even a thought leader and incredibly gifted writer like Maya Angelou used at some points in her life and I dare anyone call her anything less than that.
And Finally, While Some Do It To Relax, Many Have Other (Exceedingly Valid) Reasons For Using Cannabis
Multiple sclerosis. Cancer. Glaucoma. PTSD. Arthritis. HIV/AIDS. Crohn’s Disease. Anorexia. Hepatitis C. Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Lupus. Fibromyalgia. These are just some of the dozens of conditions that are treatable with cannabis. The point is, no matter what the reason for your use, being a cannabis-using mother doesn’t make you any better or worse than any other mom. Motherhood is way more complex than that. And as it turns out, so is marijuana.