Is parenting while high the last cannabis-related taboo?
Drinking is so ubiquitous that no one bats an eye at a parent cracking a beer around their kids. And there is a whole culture of “wine moms” who joke about bringing Stanley cups full of pinot grigio to the soccer field on Saturday mornings. (Or is it a joke? No one is checking.)
But smoking as a parent is still discussed in hushed tones. Afraid of being branded bad parents, moms and dads hide their cannabis use from all but a few trusted friends.
Around here, we’re anti-stigma in all its forms. Not only do we think that smoking cannabis is just fine for parents…but it may actually make the job of raising tiny humans easier and more fun. Here’s what parents who smoke weed have figured out.
Disclaimer: We have to say it. Please use cannabis safely and responsibly. No one is advocating you get completely zooted before caring for small children. No substance, including cannabis, should be used in a way that will put anyone’s safety at risk.
Smoking Can Bring Joy to Repetition
Toddlers and small children love to do the same things over and over (and over) again. They want to sing Baby Shark 200 times in a row. They think something that got you to laugh once will get you to laugh every time—and they’ll test that theory. They insist you re-read their favorite story at bedtime, even though you’ve read it every night for the past six months.
It’s enough to make even the most patient parents lose their cool. But with a little buzz going, it’s so much easier to enjoy these repetitive activities. Being high can help parents to live in the moment, to ignore the dishes or the emails, and to enjoy quality time with their kids. It helps to turn off our self-censor so we can get down on all fours and be as silly as they are. And it turns Baby Shark rendition #167 into a fun bonding moment.
Smoking Can Make the Chores…Pleasant?
Parenting is a constant cycle of monotonous chores. Cooking. Dishes. Laundry. Cleaning. It’s a neverending loop of invisible work, only really noticed when it doesn’t get done and the kitchen is a mess or the kids don’t have clean underwear.
But chores can be a meditative experience. Ascetics from Catholic nuns to Buddhist monks devote hours to repetitive tasks as an act of devotion, from cleaning their monasteries to tending their vegetable gardens.
We’re obviously not advocating a life of robes and celibacy. But a quick puff can help you to get into a more mindful headspace. When you’re high, it’s just you and the laundry—and you’ll probably do a more thorough job than if your mind was running in a million different directions.
So if you have a little time for chores while kids are sleeping or at daycare, light up and dig in. When you’ve got a gentle high and some nice music playing, folding your kiddo’s favorite unicorn t-shirt can be an act of peace and love.
Smoking Can Help You Keep Calm Amidst the Chaos
Even if you’re not an anxious person, kids can be anxiety-inducing. They want your attention all the time. They don’t quite get the concept of “inside voices.” They can turn a clean room into a FEMA-worthy disaster faster than you can blink.
You want to be a patient parent who doesn’t go bananas over the small stuff. A low dose of THC can help with that. One study by University of Chicago and University of Illinois at Chicago researchers suggests that low doses of THC can cause stress relief and reduce anxiety, while higher doses may increase “negative mood.” The study’s “low dose” was 7.5mg and their “high dose” was 12.5mg of THC. But the right amount for you will depend on factors like tolerance, gender, weight, and age.
Smoking Can Be Self-Care
Parenting is a 24/7 job, and it can be all-consuming if you let it. Many parents report intense feelings of isolation, loneliness, anxiety, and a loss of self once they have children.
A parent that is suffering like this is unlikely to be at their best. They can be short-tempered, unengaged, and depressed. Plus, these issues affect more than just the parent. Children of anxious parents are more likely to develop generalized anxiety disorder, separation anxiety disorder, and specific phobias.
Parents want to give their kids the best possible start. So self-care is not an indulgence. It is a necessity.
How are you taking care of yourself? In a perfect world, we’d all be exercising daily, enjoying our hobbies, and getting some time to ourselves each week. But we don’t live in a perfect world, and that kind of free time isn’t always an option.
Parents who smoke weed can uncoil that anxious tension in their spine, to relax their shoulders, to take a deep breath for the first time all day. It can help you to get a good night’s rest so you’ll be fresh tomorrow (without a hangover). And being a calmer you is not just good for you. It’s good for your whole family.
Common Sense Cautions
We’re all for safe and frequent smoking. But there are a few precautions that we have to mention.
- Some studies show that using cannabis while pregnant can lead to health concerns for the baby like lower birth weight and abnormal neurological development. So it’s probably safest to avoid cannabis use while pregnant or breastfeeding.
- If kids get into your stash of edibles—especially gummies or chocolates—they could easily polish off the whole pack. Keep your edibles well hidden from children, ideally in some kind of locked box that they can’t access.
- While cannabis smoke isn’t considered as hazardous as tobacco smoke, it’s still not something that children should be inhaling. So only smoke outside, and wash your hands thoroughly afterward.
Give Yourself a Much-Deserved Break
A high-strung, stressed-out mom or dad isn’t doing anyone any favors. It’s hard on the parent to live in a constant state of anxiety. And it’s hard on the kiddos who just want your time and attention.
If a smoking practice can help you to be the parent that you and your kids both deserve, we say hell yes. Smoke a bowl, get down on their level, and build the best damn LEGO house your living room has ever seen.