By: The 420 Moms
As more states begin to legalize, parents are trying to destigmatize their medicinal cannabis use. Even in an illegal state, non-smokers are starting to be accepting of marijuana users - to an extent. It's still incredibly taboo for some and pressuring others to accept it won't do anything but backfire. That's why advocates and activists should always be knowledgeable of basic cannabis education and the health related benefits.
When approaching the situation with your children is a whole different story, though. You're not changing their minds on a subject they don't agree with, like you'd have to with a non-smoking adult. You must teach them what it is, why some people use it and all the many benefits and uses that come from the plant. Answering their questions honestly and truthfully when they ask will only create a positive understanding for you and your kids.
All our children are under 5 years of age and we still try to use it as discreetly as possible. Especially in an illegal state where it's just not tolerated, and could potentially do more harm than good being open with them right now. Most children associate smoking with being bad, so seeing mommy hit the bowl is not happening any time soon. When our children are more mature and older, the conversation will be had. And when the time comes to where they are adults, we'd hope they'd decide to medicate with marijuana before excessively using alcohol.
We hate having to hide our cannabis use, but we understand their minds don't comprehend why we're doing it just yet. As stay at home moms, puffing a joint on the back porch with your coffee, before the kids get up, creates a relaxed, euphoric feeling that helps start the day off better and parent better.
Once medicated, it allows us to become more creative in the way we interact with our little ones. On a day we're not medicated, we might just get up, make breakfast and let the kids free play - but when medicated with cannabis, you're more likely to get up, let the kids help with breakfast and join them for some silly reenactments of their favorite characters. Life can also be very hectic and unpredictable, using marijuana medicinally relaxes the mind and helps one unwind from unnecessary stress. For us, it's been an amazing coping mechanism to handle the hustle and bustle of everyday life and to enjoy at the end of a long day.
Our interactions are a lot more playful with the use of cannabis and it has only helped us connect better with them. Children are fragile and see the world in a different light, cannabis has opened our eyes to their little world on a deeper level. We often forget they see beauty in the simplest things. Cannabis use in moderation has only seemed to improve the way we parent our children.
We grew up in the 1990s with the DARE program. All our 90s kid viewers, y'all remember what we're talking about, right? A police officer walking around the class with a picture of cannabis, telling us how it'll rot our brains? Yeah, that program. We weren't educated on basic cannabis education from our parents, so it left us feeling that using it was wrong.
We realized later on that most of their "facts" were completely inaccurate. To say those facts were true for everyone was outlandish. What's even worse is that a lot of the children believed them. With the evolution of the internet, it has become a lot easier to maintain the correct facts from reliable sources. It's always good to know the pros and cons of anything you decide to put inside your body and not just accept the one-sided argument we received in elementary school.
Our parents indulged in cannabis use while they were younger, then quit once they had kids or smoked while we were kids, but it wasn't talked about in either household. Surely not when we were as young as we were during the DARE program. It wasn't until high school, when both of us had already started medicating often before our parents decided to discuss it with us. By this time, we already knew it wasn't this scary, hard drug like our teachers tried to warn us about.
As adults, we both agree that our parents should have been the ones having that conversation with us first. And as adults with children, we both agree that we will be having that conversation with our children first. Answering all their questions and concerns, honestly and truthfully.