It’s been a long day of Zoom classes, intermittent playtime, regular meal prep, laughing, screaming, pouting, running—all while you try to cram your own work into the gaps. But now the kids are in bed.
Time to hit the vape.
The topic of parenting and cannabis has ruffled feathers for decades, born out of a stigma of drug-use that insinuates mom and dad can’t get high and be proper guardians at the same time. But as more states around the U.S. legalize cannabis for recreational use, more people are becoming comfortable with parents indulging in the benefits of a little marijuana. Like a glass or two of wine at the end of the day, minus the hangover in the morning.
Some parents find that it is making them more patient, less anxious, more playful, and, by and by, more attentive to their children. But while a trend is developing (especially in Illinois) of parents lighting up (or chowing down or vaping or dabbing or employing any number of means of consumption), anxiety about being high around children persists. People across the country are curious about cannabis—and they’re ready to know more.
So, we got together with Lisa Hurwitz, Chief Marketing Officer at Grassroots to spark up ( 😏) a conversation about parenting and pot: where the stigma comes from, how it can help you be a better parent, why it doesn’t make you a bad parent, and how you can safely consume cannabis even with your kids in the house.
Chicago Ideas (CI): So—parenting and pot. Why do you think there is such a stigma around it?
Lisa Hurwitz (LH): The idea of including ‘parenting’ and ‘cannabis’ in the same sentence was taboo—scandalous, even—for a long time. But as minds have opened to the benefits of cannabis products, there has been an increased comfort with the topic. Legalization has not only brought the conversation to a broader audience, but has allowed for more innovation in terms of product. Smoking is no longer the only way to feel the benefits of cannabis, and there is increased curiosity in what cannabis use can look like in this new age, particularly among overworked parents in search of an alternative way to unwind.
CI: Why is partaking in cannabis products around your children—in moderation—no more dangerous than partaking in alcohol?
LH: Cannabis when consumed in moderation can be a welcome alternative to alcohol. For many, the risk of overindulging—having that extra glass of wine or cocktail is too big a price to pay, for parenting while hungover is never fun. And now with there being so many non-odiferous options available, cannabis products are a convenient option for parents who may be looking for a more discrete way to go that is also hangover free.
CI: What are some strategies that you all have seen parents use to consume cannabis with children home?
LH: I’ve heard from parents that the best time to experiment for new users is after kids go to sleep at night or on the weekends when they have a short break from their kids during naptimes and whatnot. This allows parents to try different forms of cannabis and understand their effects without the worry of their kids being immediately around. It often takes a bit of experimentation to determine the right form and dose that works best for your body and needs.
Cannabis consumption isn’t just limited to smoking flower—smoke-less options like edibles, tinctures, and vapes are safe, discreet, and provide relief with a wide variety of strains and effects. I encourage parents (as with all medical patients and adult-use customers) to find the option that works best for them and their circumstances. Start low and go slow.
Edibles, such as Wana by Grassroots, are a popular choice for parents as they omit no odor and are suitable for microdosing throughout the day. Another bonus? The flavors are delicious.
Another popular daytime option, particularly among parents dealing with stress or anxiety, is a sublingual tincture with a high CBD:THC ratio. It’s important to experiment with dosing to find your sweet spot as it really is different for everyone. My recommendation is to start with a low dose and build from there.
CI: Parents are always around their children these days. How can they safely consume cannabis during quarantine?
LH: Just as with alcohol and any type of medication, cannabis products should be kept in a safe and secure place, safely tucked away from children. In addition to safe storage, parents often have their own set of ‘rules’ around using cannabis to ensure safety and discretion. They might opt to wait until their kids have gone to bed before indulging in an edible or smoking, for example, just as they might do when considering the timing of that bottle of wine. Others prefer to microdose throughout the day, allowing them to stay alert while gaining the benefits associated with cannabis. It’s really up to each individual to decide what’s best for them and their family.
CI: What are some of the benefits of cannabis consumption for parents?
LH: Medical marijuana patients and adult-use consumers alike are using cannabis products to manage pain, reduce anxiety, sleep better, and relax. Parents may benefit in much the same way, particularly in the midst of Covid-19 as they’re faced with the challenges of home-schooling, working from home, loss of work, small spaces….the list goes on! Many parents are seeing cannabis as a way to manage these stressors, but also to enhance their general wellness. Cannabis, particularly in challenging times like these, can be a valuable self-care tool.
CI: What do you think the future of cannabis consumption and parenting looks like?
LH: With so much focus being given to plant-based products, cannabis deserves a place in that conversation—it is just a plant, after all! i hope the momentum continues to grow as an increasing number of states legalize the plant for recreational and medical use so more people can have access to a plant-based option to help soothe, calm, or just unwind.
A natural by-product of legalization is normalization, and here in Illinois, we’re already seeing decreased stigma around cannabis following January’s legalization. There has been a clear increase in curiosity amongst parents around the benefits of cannabis products, particularly as they deal with the added stress and heightened anxiety that Covid-19 brings. I see this curiosity continuing, as parents consider cannabis as a welcome alternative to pharmaceuticals.
I believe that cannabis benefits people from all walks of life. I hope that everyone will feel supported in experimenting with cannabis products in a way that feels right to them. Will it replace that glass of wine for everyone? Maybe not. But a desirable and accessible path to well-being? Definitely.
Content provided in this blog is for general informational purposes only. The views and opinions expressed belong solely to the participants and not to their employer or other group or individual. You are solely responsible for complying with applicable laws regarding cannabis in your jurisdiction. GR Companies, Inc. (“Grassroots”) does not condone or endorse the use of cannabis outside of these permitted uses.