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Moms have come a long way since June Cleaver and Claire Huxtable. Now they’re smokin’ — and we don’t mean just because they’re hot. Cannabis is the new go-to for keeping the stressors of motherhood at bay, at least for one group of moms in Los Angeles.
And they’re not sweeping it under the rug; they’re open and out about their pot use, and even teaching their children about it along the way. Enter the year of the cannamom.
A trending high
While parents have been puffing for generations, with cannabis now legal in more than half of U.S. states, everything is more out in the open today. It’s no longer seen as something that makes an unfit parent and is as mainstream as having a glass of wine to take the edge off of a long day.
Research shows that people use medical marijuana to help manage everyday stress that goes along with parenting. They might use it to break away for a few moments of calm or even to bond with their age-appropriate kids. Whatever the reason, it’s on the rise. But there are a few caveats, ways to keep everyone safe, especially the kids.
Tips from the cannamoms
Start education early. Wendy Brazill tells the LA Times that she didn’t talk to her kids about her own pot use until they were in college, but she recently self published a children’s book, “Why Mommy Gets High.”
Her goal is to help explain that sometimes moms (and, ok, dads too) need a little break. The pages are filled with text like, “It’s hard to have fun with so much on my mind / Sometimes Mommy needs a way to unwind,” and “Mommy may slip away for just a minute or two / I’ll come back carefree, ready to bake cookies with you.”
Another mom started telling her kids, 3 and 6, that the special plant in the garden is for mommy and daddy only. Their children might not understand what it all means right away, but educating them while still young starts to build a conversation that can be followed as they get older.
“The whole key,” Shonitira Anthony, who has a podcast Blunt Blowin Mama, tells the LAT, “is to get to them before schools get to them. You want to relay your message first and let them know that you are the authority on this. So they’re not going to be like, ‘But my teacher said, but my counselor said, but my friend said.’ It’s ‘This is what my mom said.’”
Plan ahead and have safety precautions in place. Better yet: Have another caregiver around in case anything goes astray. Like, for instance, if you’re trying a new strain that has a higher THC amount that you’re used to, your kids need snacks, but all you want to do is sleep.
“As a parent, there’s nothing worse than that feeling of not being in control,” Anthony says. “It’s just not a good feeling, and a good parent wants to be prepared and have that seat belt, as they say.”
Definitely know your audience. While parents in California feel a bit more freedom to discuss weed with their toddlers and other parents, even if there is some judgment, be more careful in other places around the country where attitudes in general toward cannabis and parenting will get more than just a gentle side-eye.
“In California… It’s a bit normalized,” one mom told the Los Angeles Times. “On the East Coast? Absolutely not. That’s something you keep between yourself and your partner or your co-parent … because you do risk Child Protective Services [or the] Department of Children and Family Services intervening. And that is not something that you want.”