Celebrating moms who mindfully consume cannabis
In my thirty-five years on the planet, I have been a competitive athlete, a retail worker, a journalist, a yoga instructor, and more, but the hardest thing I’ve ever done is be a mom–and I’m only two years in.
One of my most beloved tools for managing the stress of making dinners, cleaning up toys, and going through the nightly bedtime ritual after a full day of work is to pack a little bowl and relax. In addition, micro-dosing cannabinoids while parenting a toddler pushing teeth gives me patience as he screams for water but then also screams because I gave him water.
Before the toddler phase, back when he was fresh, stepping outside for a joint or vaping up in my bedroom away from my newborn helped me regulate my system as it recovered from complete hormone upheaval. The plant has been a tool that I value every step of the journey thus far, and it makes me think about the tools other mothers use.
This Mother’s Day, now that I can more accurately grasp what it takes to earn the name Mom, I wanted to pass the mic to fellow moms who consume cannabis as they walk their children through life to adulthood. Almost every person we spoke with mentioned that becoming a mother made them more mindful about cannabis use and that the stigma of consuming the plant was the only negative part of being a mom who partakes.
Let’s hear more.
Angela Stocker, Comedian & Entrepreneur, Highly Crafty
“I’ve become more aware of when I consume to ensure that I can set intentions and really get the benefits that I seek. Whether it be more patience, relaxation or pain relief. I’m just way more intentional and selective.
“I’m much more present when I spend time with my kids. I can really focus and listen with an open mind and heart. It provides me with the ability to stop and think before I react to a triggering situation…and life with a 4 & 7 year old is full of triggers! It also helps me to quiet the constant noise and focus on quality time rather than my endless to-do list. Cannabis has innumerable ways it can help mothers, we just need the laws to reflect that.”
Tyler Therapy, Musical Artist and Content Creator, BAD MUTHAPUFFA
“My consumption has changed tremendously from being pregnant with my miracle child to even now with him transitioning from a toddler to a full blown kid! He is now 5 years old and I’m 5 years wiser and more intentional with my cannabis use. More responsible, more reasonable.
Consuming cannabis definitely helps me with my day to day parenting. A job title in which I am always learning new skills and new ways of life that I believe cannabis enhances. Like learning patience and learning to be most present. It helps me to be active and I am always actively learning new approaches to parenthood that is most rewarding. It also fuels my creativity and instill it into my son who is most inspired by me so I continue to stay inspired. And most of all, it heals Mommy so that I can show up as my best self for my baby. The only way I believe it negatively impacts me is if I am overly using it or even underly using it, throwing me off balance and off our household routine.”
Ash Pavesio, Founder, A Little Ash – Digital Community & Community Manager at Our Academy
“As a mother who also has anxiety, the plant has been a part of my life for a long time. Motherhood is inherently complicated, especially in cases like mine where my daughter doesn’t spend all of her time with me. My mental health postpartum was greatly affected. Cannabis helped me pull myself out of a very dark, difficult period. Cannabis has allowed me to lead by example by taking care of my body, mind and spirit in ways that are ancestral and feel good. I also believe it allows me to be more present in every aspect of my life, including time with my daughter.
Of course the stigma is alive in well – for parents, for Latines, for women, for queer folks. It’s been a journey to live my truth openly, but here it is. Now I have the pleasure of being able to consume with my mother and her mother – giving us extra space to connect, share and commiserate.”
Gena Surphlis, Founder & CEO, 024 Inc
“My cannabis consumption absolutely helps me on my mothering journey. I’m a little bit further on the journey than many of my cannamom friends; but do we really ever stop parenting?
My son is in his twenties and I’ve found at this stage of his life, it is essential for me to share my wisdom and insight without being critical. Cannabis helps me communicate with him better because I can listen to my son and not interrupt when communicating with him. Listening is crucial for healthy communication, and it helps me to be less critical when responding to him. Our communication is invaluable and I have created a safe environment where he can come and talk to me without feeling judged.”
Sabrina Guerrero, Content Creator, Event Host and Event Coordinator
“Before kids I was using Cannabis mindlessly, it was an escape and I was over using. As soon as I became a Mother I started being more mindful of my cannabis use and began using with intent. Now I use it to be fully in the moment by being able to calm my anxiety and not dissociate when I feel triggered.
“Right before having my first child i was realizing how medication was making my depression and anxiety worse. So motherhood and using cannabis with intent really kicked my healing journey into high gear. If I was still medicated by antidepressants and anxiety medication I wouldn’t be the Mom I am today.
“I don’t say cannabis makes me a good Mom but it does help me live and enjoy the Mom-life to the fullest. Cannabis allows me to be in the moment and worry about the messes later. It allows me to subside the stress and anxiety and open my mind to imagination and play time.”
Annie Davis, Founder, Growing Impact
“Before I was a mom, I consumed primarily before bed, as a sleep aid. However, I also consumed socially. As a mother, I prefer to be sober around my children, so I now limit my consumption to before bed, and social occasions where I am only around adults. While I don’t consume around my children, I do believe that the effects of cannabis on my endocannabinoid system reduce my overall levels of stress and worry, which skyrocketed for me post-partum with both of my children.
Because of the stigma around cannabis, even in Northern California, it’s not yet socially acceptable in most of my mom circles – to consume cannabis openly. While tons of moms in my local community know I work in the industry, and even ask me for product recommendations, we don’t typically consume in social settings. With cannabis still stigmatized, the negative impact is one of feeling irresponsible as a mother, because that’s what many still believe, even if I know it’s far from the truth.”
Jordon Rahmil, Senior PR Director, Curaleaf
“After many years of being ‘out’ as a proud cannabis consumer and advocate for the plant, my personal health care decisions feel much more private for me now. My reaction as a new mother has been to focus on privacy and protection of my family, which is a brand new feeling for me as I’m typically very transparent and open. And while I’m protective, I also have no concern for anyone who cares to judge us.
“I work in cannabis, as does my husband, and cannabis is responsible for many of the most beautiful parts of our life together. I look forward to educating my child about the plant in ways that the D.A.R.E. programs of my generation never gave us the chance!”
Rebecca Allen-Tapp, Business Development Manager, Syrris AGI UK
“My relationship with cannabis has evolved over time, especially having been diagnosed with a rare cancer shortly after my son’s first birthday. Now it’s become part of my wellness routine alongside exercise, diet, mindfulness, and stress management.
“When I consume cannabis it has a profound impact on my overall mood. It helps me to not sweat the small stuff and be more present. I can get so wrapped up in work that I miss precious opportunities to spend time with my child but when I take a break to consume cannabis it helps me to see when it’s time to close the laptop and just play.
“I think it’s important to remember to take tolerance breaks and understand the intention behind your consumption. My mission as a mom is to be as present as possible and I don’t want to have to solely rely on any resource to do that. Cannabis is a tool I utilize in my parenting journey but it’s not a cure-all.”
Christie Tarleton, Marketing Director and Co-Founder, Canvast Supply Co.
“Cannabis is a huge help on my parenting journey – as I love to use cannabis to be more “in the moment” and be incredibly present with what I’m doing right then and there. It allows me to fully focus on play, creating fun activities and helps calm the anxiety that can arise during difficult times.
“I have yet to experience any negative impact on it – as I’ve been pretty mindful about the right and wrong time to partake. I don’t always have to use it to find myself present, but it does replace that glass of wine that moms sometimes feel they need to help them wind down at the end of the day.”
Devin Aracena, CEO, Canvast Supply Co.
“For me, my consumption has slowed down and shifted to more of a microdose regimen. Staying in control is of utmost importance; I have really enjoyed finding my microdose flow and appreciate the health and mental benefits I see from it.
“It helps me find calm in the chaos, but most importantly, it helps me have FUN with my kids. To put the computer and phone away and get down on their level and truly play with them, deep belly laugh playing is probably the most healing thing we can all do with our kids; cannabis helps me tap into that as often as possible.”
Bri Smith, Writer and Senior brand strategist
“Once I became a mother, I took much longer breaks in-between sessions and had to really learn how to understand my body and communicate my needs for a break as a new (and extremely exhausted) mom. I had to adjust my lifestyle to fit the new responsibilities of motherhood, and my relationship with cannabis was no exception.
“Cannabis allows me to reset the chaos in my mind and the utter exhaustion in my body. I consume something energetic and creative to create distance between my brain space and the unending list of demands that spin like a ferris wheel. I sit longer, listen more carefully, connect deeper because of cannabis. Cannabis has helped me at every new stage of my Child’s development and in maintaining my sanity and homeostasis when I thought I had already lost it.
“The prohibition of cannabis negatively impacts my mothering experience. The constant fear that some government agency will falsely claim that my consumption of cannabis somehow endangers my child is overwhelming at best. The threat that she could be forcibly removed from my home, or that I could go to jail for consumption, makes it nearly impossible to incorporate plant medicine safely, holistically, or with pleasure.”
Kirsten Velasco, CEO, VapeNProp
“Consuming cannabis has made me a much better parent! The internal clock flogs me with relentless tasks. Cannabis quiets that harassment so I can accept the spontaneously changing needs and schedules of kids. They need time and patience.
“Cannabis unlocks that calm so I can focus and enjoy the precious moments. The negative impact was the shame and the secrets. I hated hiding something that was a benevolent strategy for daily living. Vaping eliminates the smell and fortunately, my kids grew up and could handle the reality.”
“I used to smoke a lot of flower. But after having a baby I couldn’t be busy rolling something up or outside smoking for half an hour. So I got really into dabbing at that point because it only takes a minute to get pretty stoned. And the smell isn’t noticeable and if you pop a window open or turn your vents on. Edibles were essential for resetting my sleep patterns once my kid started sleeping through the night.
“Consuming cannabis definitely helps me on my journey. I feel like I am more patient and gentle when I’m a little bit stoned. But I think the most beneficial thing it does for me as a mom in particular is that it makes me laugh a lot. My daughter is hilarious and when I’m a little stoned it’s easy to enjoy those moments with her and laugh together.
“I fear judgment a lot and that fear causes me to not participate or be myself at my daughter’s school events, and to be hesitant which of her friends that I allow playdates with. I don’t want my daughter to have her friends’ parents ban their kids from hanging out with her because they think I’m an irresponsible stoner or something.”
Margot Buswell, Mother of two
“I have switched from solely smoking cannabis to taking my cannabis medication in gummy form. I still consume flower but have cut down considerably. I find I am a calmer person and parent. Cannabis helps me considerably with my PTSD related anxiety and stress and also helps stabilize my mood (in conjunction with other therapies and medicines) as a person living with Bipolar Disorder.
“Cannabis has changed my life for the better. I am able to treat my anxiety and stress well with cannabis. I believe that little people can feel the emotional states of their caregivers. I never want to put my stress and anxiety on my children. I am lucky to have found a medication that works so well for my mood stability. I believe that cannabis is a gift. Cannabis helps me support myself so that I can be a better support for my children.”
Jane Bowyer, Creator, Hash Fight
“My consumption has increased since having children. Prior to, I was a casual consumer (sometimes a few times a week, sometimes a few times a month.) I started extracting and cultivating cannabis as a profession, after moving to Colorado in 2014. (My children were 2 and 5). Naturally, I have been exposed to more cannabis and more ways to benefit!
“Yes! I’m an anxious parent. Consuming cannabis helps me be more present and more creative! It can. Sometimes, I just want to relax when I consume. If I have consumed cannabis to help me rest and they come in riled up, who wins?! I guess that happens outside of consumption, too.”
Kendra Stocking, VP of Sales, Cherry World
“I start my weekend morning with coffee and a 5mg edible. It’s just enough to allow me to slow down and be more present with my girls. I can focus on having fun with them and it helps take the edge off when inevitably my kids get into a fight or aren’t listening. Haha. Every night after the kids go to sleep my husband and I enjoy a joint together as part of our wind down routine.
“I’m extremely lucky to have grown up in SoCal and surround myself with open minded individuals. Because I work in the cannabis industry I proudly wear cannabis branded tee shirts to school pickup and sports practices and have never gotten dirty looks from any parents (that I know of ha!). I know a lot of mothers in more conservative areas are harshly judged for their consumption and don’t have the support they need, it’s such a shame. I smoke weed and I’m a great mom and my kids are smart, kind, hilarious and happy.”
Alison Di Spaltro, CEO, Escape Artists
“I dabbled in cannabis consumption in college and in my 20s, but did not start incorporating it more regularly into my routine until more recently. I realized that higher doses of cannabis do not work well for me and now, with more topical and microdosing options, I enjoy incorporating it into my daily life.
“I have a very hectic life and I tend to carry my stress in my neck and shoulders, and end up building up a lot of tension there. I’ve found that topicals really help with that. I also really like microdose products like mints or our Escape Artists 2.5mg THC-2.5mg CBD flights as an alternative to alcohol when winding down after getting the kids to bed or if I’m headed out to dinner with friends.”
Jen Merryman, Co-Owner and President, Mountaintop Extracts
“If I had known then what I know now, my consumption journey would have 100% started pre-motherhood. I started taking cannabis when I was 45, having attended a Ninja Cross Training Bootcamp that blew out my back disc and spent two years, with no surgery, during a recovery that required a heavy daily dose of cannabis and pilates reformers. Cannabis was a life-saver from pain and depression. It kept me balanced and calm in my recovery.
“I love bringing cannabis into my hot yoga practice and meditation work. During my practice I focus on my evolving role as an older mother with two adult children who have children of their own. Cannabis allows me to embrace transitions more peacefully and has ignited in me creativity with a new fearlessness that’s soulfully refreshing.”
Sara Hussain, Owner, Budwell Shop
“Since becoming a mother, my cannabis consumption is much more mindful than it was previously. These days my intent is tuned into medicinal properties of the plant, and how it can benefit me from a therapeutic perspective. Parenting is very humbling for someone who is used to being in control and executing at an absurdly high level. Cannabis has helped me calibrate my expectations of ‘how things are supposed to be’ and learn to just ride the wave and be grateful for the journey.
“The pervasive stigma around the plant means I keep my business to myself. Nobody knows that I work in the industry (own my own smokeware company), lest that judgment roll from me down to my son. I’m just another mom volunteering at school and handing out snacks at games.
“I feel for any mom who has to navigate cannabis and parenting, especially when it comes to the issue of consuming while pregnant or breastfeeding. The pro-consumption voices can be just as aggressive as the teetotalers, and if there’s one thing moms don’t need, it’s other people telling them how they ‘should’ act.”
Manndie Tingler, Founder, Women’s Canna Awards
“Since becoming a Mom seventeen years ago, my cannabis use has significantly increased. As I have gained access to more and more information about the benefits of cannabis, the more I have expanded its functionality in my life. I have made it my personal mission to be incredibly outward with how I use it so that other moms can begin to feel more empowered to do the same.
“Cannabis helps me feel more focused on what really matters, my kids’ development. I figure anyone who is judging me is just uneducated, so I often find myself in a teaching capacity when it comes up around my parenting. A while back, I had plenty of judgment about what I did for work and there have been a few families who wouldn’t allow their children to come to our home. Those sorts of moments break my heart because it impacts my children.
“Additionally, I do have teenagers who are canna curious and have canna curious friends so I have to be careful about monitoring what I have in the house and keeping it stored properly.”
Sarah Falvo, Founder, Wildflower Coalition
“There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that cannabis makes me a better parent. I am more patient, present, creative and fun when I have consumed, and it allows me to focus on what is right in front of me, rather than all of the noise around me.
“When I consume, I tend to smoke more, but smoking isn’t always the best option for consumption when you have kids, so I have found other more discreet ways to consume. I also have heavily decreased my alcohol use, and swapped it out for cannabis beverages, which is a great alternative.
“I have always been open about my cannabis use. I still am the mom at the gatherings who would pull out a joint rather than drink the glass of Rose, which may have gotten me some weird looks in the past, but is definitely more accepted now. I am very open with both of my daughters (12 and 8) about cannabis and that this is mom’s career. And hopefully, they won’t steal from my stash like I did with my own mom when I was in high school.”
Vicky Thompson, Marketing Director, HauteBox
“I never consumed cannabis before I had children, but I was always curious. After I had my daughter in 2016, postpartum rocked me to my core. As a young mother, the resources available for postpartum anxiety were limited, so I took my curiosity for the medicinal benefits of cannabis and decided to experiment myself.
“To this day my husband says it saved me. Taking breaks to consume with intention almost feels like meditation to me. I come back a more playful and patient mother to my kids.
“Being a mom who consumes cannabis can feel lonely. I still feel the judgment and stigma from other moms. I know I am an amazing mom, but when people find out I consume cannabis I feel as though they look at my mothering differently. However, over the years friends and family have become curious and open to experimenting with cannabis because they see how much it has helped me, which has brought us all closer.”
Gretchen Giles, Sr. Account Executive, Grasslands Agency
“I grew up in Northern California in the 1970s, so yes, pre-motherhood. There remains an astonishingly wrong-headed notion that getting high means getting irresponsible. In fact, many of us get both more detail-oriented and more relaxed once we partake.
“I no longer have a daily mom life but when my now grown and married sons were young (eldest is shown above in 1987), I used it during their naps to help me relax while they were down and then to be a more conscious and focused participant when they awoke.
“So much of parenting toddlers is about anticipating and providing and preventing and protecting—and cannabis allowed me to be more still and enjoy more moments that had nothing to do with anything except joy and presence.”
Emily Gray Brosious, Content Marketing Director, Grasslands Agency
“I think there is still a lot of cultural pressure on women to embody this idealized version of what the perfect mother should be, and cannabis consumption doesn’t necessarily fit into that narrative. But I also think there is a growing recognition that responsible cannabis consumption helps many mothers be more present, more creative and more engaged as parents.”
Greta Brandt, President, The Flower Shop
“I would say my cannabis journey began when I entered the industry as general counsel for The Flower Shop eight years ago—right after my oldest was born. Back then, it was baptism by fire. I learned so much during those early years because it was an absolute necessity.
“Instead of picking up a glass of wine at the end of a hard or long day, whether that’s from work or kids, I prefer to smoke a pre-roll or have a gummy to relax and unwind. I am a morning person and my kids wake up super early, and I have found that cannabis is much better for me the next morning in comparison to alcohol. I am not lethargic or tired after consuming cannabis, which is great.”
Jennifer Maehr, CEO, Domestic
“Since I had children my consumption changed from social smoking for fun to micro-dosing for stress related behaviors. An example of this is, when using cannabis safely and intentionally not over consuming, I can reduce my anger, yelling and impatience with my children. All while being very present, responsible and interactive with them.
“Consuming cannabis can have its small share of negative aspects. One off the top of my head, is being too relaxed and forgetting things that I didn’t put into my schedule. So forgetfulness when something isn’t written out.”
Tracy Brady, SVP of Communications, Curaleaf
“When my kids were young, I consumed mostly at night when they were in bed and I was ‘off’ as a parent. Now that they are teens and I discuss my work openly with them, I treat cannabis the same as I would if consuming alcohol around my kids. Part of erasing the stigma begins at home – age appropriate discussions of course.
“I generally consume to relax, and get out of what I call ‘the stress loop’ of being a working mother, where you’re managing so many things at once that you just want to slow down, NOT multi-task for an hour or two and be in the moment. Meditation, yoga and reading help me with that, and so does cannabis.
“I would say one negative impact has been the times when I felt as though I need to be cautious about discussing my career with other parents. This has lessened with time, but stigma is still there.”
Crystal Millican, VP of Retail & Marketing, Cookies
“I grew up in a very religious and conservative community. I was always a freethinker and eventually became known as the controversial kid in high school who wrote a term paper about legalizing cannabis and making reparations for the War on Drugs before I had ever even smoked a joint. So consumption started later in life for me after I left home, traveled the world a bit and developed new lenses through which to view life.
“As far as daily life, I’ve always had trouble quieting the noise of the day and falling asleep. Our bedhead caps are perfect for easing into a restful sleep and then waking up without any sluggishness.”