Disclaimer: This essay discusses daily pot smoking and parenting. Parenting involves children; hence, this essay discusses daily pot smoking and children. At no point, however, do the pot and the children meet. Children do not see pot. They do not hear Mommy say, “Time to smoke some pot!” They do not smell delicious reefer wafting from my fashionably ergonomic, impressively designed Snoop Dogg Pounds Lightship Bubbler (and Snoop didn’t even pay me to say that. Go look at it. It’s so choice). They do not consume any edibles. In fact, my children remain unaware that any marijuana has gone into the making of my parenting.
So stop clutching your pearls, Karen. I’m not blowing pot smoke in the baby’s face while I snarf Doritos and stumble through glassy-eyed debates comparing David Lynch’s 1984 adaptation of Dune to Denis Villeneuve’s 2021 version. Nor am I ignoring my spawn in favor of Hot Tub Time Machine.
Daily Pot Smoking Helps My Anxiety
I’m a normal mom. In these Times of Covid, I stay home all day. So Mommy wakes and bakes. I have two options. I can wake and bake, or I can take two benzos instead of one. We all know that benzos run your brains towards fucktangular: driving on benzos, which I am legally prescribed and to which I am now clinically addicted, is the equivalent of driving with a blood alcohol level between 0.050% and 0.079%; 0.08% is illegal in every state. Their use is associated with cognitive impairment, decreased motor control, drowsiness, and an increased risk of hip fracture in old age. Parents, don’t let your babies grow up to take benzos.
Daily pot smoking helps my raging anxiety. Did I mention I have raging anxiety? I do not have “some anxiety.” I have general anxiety disorder, a fancy way of saying “anxiety about everything,” which is also a fancy way of saying that I slam awake at three a.m. wanting to die over something that happened in sixth grade — that is, on nights I’m not slamming awake at 3 a.m. freaking out over something that may happen in the near, not-so-near, or far-distant future. Life is full of heart palpitations, sweaty palms, tooth-grinding, and tension. I think you hate me. I think your dog hates me. Some days, I think my dog hates me.
Daily pot smoking makes that all go away. And not “recede into the background noise.” It goes away completely. I smoke pot not to get high, but to feel like a functional human being capable of making rational decisions. I no longer think you hate me. Since my anxiety sends me into a spiral of tension, which manifests as anger, smoking pot also stops me from screaming at people for no real reason whatsoever (there’s a reason, like a shoe in the bathtub or a cache of sticks under my child’s bed. But not a good reason). I become a better human.
It Helps With My ADHD and Chronic Illness
ADHD comes with a tendency to hyperfocus. Hyperfocus, a specialty of inattentive ADHD, happens when someone tunes out all the things in favor of one of the things, becoming completely oblivious to the world around them. My husband can say, “Good morning,” and zombie-like, without looking from my computer screen, I’ll reply, “I love you, too.”
Daily pot smoking helps stop my tendency to hyperfocus. Hyperfocus can be a superpower. It can also stop you from spending time with your kids. When I smoke, I spend time drawing, playing Castles of Caladale or Superfight, helping small people assemble Lego creations, and generally being a fun, available parent. Like those billboards enjoin me to do, I take time to be a parent. My kids are happier when I smoke pot daily.
I also have chronic pain issues. Guess what helps? Daily pot smoking. At this point, I feel like a Sublime song. Pot cuts through physical pain like nothing else — even CBD. And when anxiety and chronic pain mash together into a toxic stew of misery, there’s my Snoop Dogg bubbler, just waiting to help.
Daily Pot Smoking Makes Everything Better. But I’m Lucky.
It kills my migraines. Music sounds better. I feel less guilty about self-care. Housework seems easier and more pleasant. I’m more mellow — I yell at my kids less often. I yell at my husband less often. I do more crafts. I’m calmer. Smoking pot daily makes me a better human. And not in that Radiohead “Fitter, happier, more productive” sort of way. More like a Sublime “Lovin’ is what I got” vibe.
But I’m one lucky bitch.
I can get away with this because I’m blue-eyed and white. Social services would take one look at me and say, “We’re sorry, ma’am. In this state, we do not remove children from parents with blue eyes unless they are being horrifically abused.” And if they did, I’d have every lawyer in this state squeezing them until they begged for mercy, because privilege. Daily pot smoking? It’s all white privilege.
No one will suspect me.
No one will bother me.
No one will take my kids.
If I were BIPOC, I couldn’t take this risk. Black mothers are judged unfit at a higher rate than their white counterparts. New York Public Radio tells a story about a woman named Jameelah whose son was removed in the delivery after she tested positive for marijuana. They didn’t catch her toking up between contractions. They simply tested her for pot. She popped positive. Social Services returned her son four days later after they decided he wasn’t “in imminent risk of harm.”
Did they test you for marijuana in the delivery room, white ladies?
Oh. I didn’t think so.
BIPOC women are at greater risk social risk, then, from marijuana use. So my happy anti-anxiety smoke can’t help them. They’re forced to rely on other methods, which don’t work as well (at least for me, and I’ve tried them all) and require, in most cases, access to a psychiatrist — rare as hen’s teeth in our state, and just as expensive.
So while daily pot smoking helps me to people better, live a more normal life, and keep my family on an even keel, BIPOC are denied that right. Obviously, this is grossly unfair, and doesn’t begin to touch issues of marijuana and BIPOC communities, including higher rates of incarceration and longer prison sentences.
So I’m privileged.
But privilege means awareness, not guilt; it brings with it a duty to work towards bettering a situation, not a need to shame yourself. So I continue my daily pot smoking, and in the meantime, support politicians and policies that not only decriminalize and legalize marijuana, but also support BIPOC communities as a whole. I’m also careful, when I talk about smoking every day, to point out my privilege. I live across the road from a Black family. That mom couldn’t smoke like I do.
I’m grateful that I can.
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