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Marijuana Mamas!

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Is pot the new pilates?

Gina Kaysen Fernandes: A new wave of reefer madness is sweeping suburbia -- but it's not just teenagers who are lighting up. Middle-aged, middle-class soccer moms are smoking pot ... a lot. These women aren't stoners: they're teachers, lawyers, and, perhaps, even your neighbor who prefers puffing a joint to sipping chardonnay.

woman smoking marijuana

"Marijuana is the magic in my life that helps me unwind, stay sane, and have more energy," says Sonia, a 24-year-old mother from Los Angeles. Working full-time as a restaurant manager leaves Sonia feeling stressed out and drained at the end of the day. She smokes once or twice daily to relax. "I have a stressful job, it's something that helps me wind down so I don't take out my frustration on my husband or my child."

Sonia became a mother at the age of 22 and suffered from some depression. She turned to marijuana to help curb the baby blues. A doctor later diagnosed Sonia with anxiety and wrote her a prescription for the herbal remedy. Sonia gets her stash from a medicinal marijuana clinic and takes comfort in knowing the pot she smokes is legal and high quality.

Mary is a 37-year-old, self-employed mother in Seattle who smokes pot several times a week. "It is relaxing, fun, and once in a while I self-medicate for cramps or headaches," said Mary. She says she prefers smoking to drinking beer because it's easier on the body and has fewer calories. Mary buys her bags from a dealer, making it more risky because "there's still a real danger of being arrested," says Mary.

The website,, surveyed hundreds of women nationwide between the ages of 25 and 60 years old. Out of that group, 52% admitted to using marijuana at least ten times a year. 27% smoked between one and seven times a week. And 78% of those women knew someone who got high on a regular basis.

The results of recent surveys are no surprise to Allen St. Pierre, executive director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, or NORML. "These findings are indicative of women's willingness to admit to the social stigma that was so high in the 1970s and 80s," said St. Pierre.

Both women who shared their stories with momlogic say that many of their friends smoke weed. But while it seems "marijuana mamas" are everywhere, this silent majority prefers to stay in the shadows. "They think if they admit it, it makes them a bad mom," says Sonia, who believes the opposite is true. "It makes me a better mother. It clears my head and allows me to focus on my child." Mary says it's important to be a responsible smoker "by doing it mindfully, only when I have downtime."

Sonia has a 2-year-old and is a few years away from the dreaded drug talk. But she doesn't plan to hide her habit from her son. "I want to be honest, I don't want him to feel marijuana is an evil thing," said Sonia. Mary says she's very open about her drug use with her daughter, Sierra. "We talk about responsible use pretty often," says Mary. Both women say they never smoke in the house or in front of their children.

There's a lot of debate over how to talk to kids about using drugs without sounding like a hypocrite, especially if you're the one hitting the bong. Zero-tolerance proponents believe you must support abstinence only. But advocates say a more real-world approach is to discuss drug use in moderation. This method is detailed in a pamphlet called "Safety First: A Reality-Based Approach to Teens and Drugs," which is distributed by the California PTA.

This growing group of ganja smokers certainly has the attention of lawmakers. A renewed debate is heating up over legalizing (or at minimum, taxing the medicinal sales of) marijuana to cash in on this potential cash cow. According to NORML, marijuana remains the fourth largest cash crop in America, in spite of the estimated $10 billion that law enforcement spends annually to attempt to outlaw the plant. In California, marijuana is the number-one cash crop. Thirteen states have laws on the books that allow for medicinal use of marijuana. The most recent federal survey finds more than 100 million Americans have tried pot at some point, and more than 14 million used it in the past month. "I think a lot of moms are starting to loosen up," says Sonia.

Both of these moms support legalizing marijuana. "It will help our economy, help our state, and take away that stigma," said Sonia. Mary believes pot smoking should be about personal choice, not politics. "I'm an adult and I make life or death decisions every day. The drug war has killed lots of people; smoking pot hasn't killed anyone."

What do you think? Are these moms on the right track -- or are they whacked out on more than just weed?

Photos courtesy of Michael Johnson

next: Have Your Cake and Meat it Too
625 comments so far | Post a comment now
get up, stand up June 26, 2009, 12:32 AM

“Lovely‚Ķ.great way to raise your kids with morals. There ARE ways to cope with stress and aches & pains without using…”

So you can judge a person’s parenting skills by reading a couple of paragraphs? My wife is a social worker with many years experience, she doesn’t jump to these kind of conclusions after hours of sessions.

And who is to say that using marijuana is wrong? Maybe it’s wrong for you. Just because someone isn’t living their life according to your tenets doesn’t make them a bad person or parent.

“Just deal with it like the rest of us strong people”
You think not drinking and smoking makes you strong? Funny. I thought caring rather than judging took strength.

Show me someone who’s self-righteous, and I’ll show you someone who’s insecure and afraid.

Nichole June 26, 2009, 1:53 AM

I don’t do it, but I’m completely fine with it because I equate it to drinking tea or taking herbal supplements. I don’t really think of it in the class of other obnoxious things like alcohol or cigarettes etc. My father was open about it with me - he didn’t smoke either, but let me know that if I wanted to I could after a certain age. I truly contribute the fact that I’m not a smoker with the fact that my parents didn’t OUTLAW it. It took all the mystery away and I’ve always been like, eh, take or leave it. I know it doesn’t work with my chemistry so I choose not to, but I’m perfectly fine with others doing it all they want. We’d probably have nicer, less uptight people in our society if it was legal.

Eric June 26, 2009, 8:25 AM

The self-righteous response to this is laughable. You do realize that marijuana is safer than a lot of the foods Americans consume. Particularly fast food and processed food. Remember that next time you feed your kids pizza and cheeseburgers or something out of a bag or box.

Dels June 26, 2009, 8:53 AM

I don’t smoke it when here in the states because of the jail risk but I say LEGALIZE IT!
I stopped reading comments at pg 3 but I will say ppl like Chris and Mel need to realize your issues with “pot” were instilled in you by a misinformed and biased government/media machine. Educate yourselves on the benefits and ALSO visit societies where it is legal and see for yourselves how its actually the act of prohibition that villainized this PLANT..

TO PAMALA.. get down from your soapbox lady, you can’t honestly believe all the amendments to the constitution and all the laws we have today are there by legal and proper channels of opposition.. grow up and read some LITERATURE.. THERE WAS BLOOD, SWEAT AND TEARS SHED ALL OVER THIS LAND FOR THE LAWS WE HAVE TODAY. and not all of them fit the times. some are archaic and it takes both legal channels as well as uprising to change them.

enjoy but don't make excuses June 26, 2009, 10:07 AM

I don’t care one way or the other if people want to smoke pot or not (I did it a lot as a teenager)but what does bother me is that so many women on here say they do it because it helps them deal with their kids. If you have to medicate yourself (drugs, drinking, food etc)to handle your children then yes I think you are being a bad parent. If you’re doing just because you enjoy it and want to then just say that but don’t blame your children as a reason for why you do it. I think there are two different types of people who are smoking pot, those who do it for medical reasons and those who do it just for fun. Again, I have no problem with it either way but don’t blame it on the stress of raising your children.

Anonymous June 26, 2009, 11:10 AM

I’d rather raise my child while sober.

FredaMae June 26, 2009, 2:53 PM

Any of you who are against Cannabis Consumption for Responsible ADULT Use…who imbibe Coffee, Caffeine Products, Wine/Alcohol Spirits, Feed your kids sugar, take then to the Dr. to have them shot full of chemicals and pop liquid drugs into them are Hypocrites and Judgmental.

Where Is The Evidence That What These Moms are Doing Is Causing Any Harm?

Forget the “it’s against the law” argument(you sound like LEO). It IS The Damn Laws that Are Causing The Problems. If it weren’t for the “busts” Most of You Would Never Know Who Is/Is Not A Cannabis Consumer.

It is simply None Of Your Business Because The Act Of Using Cannabis Does Not Harm The People Who Do Use It and The People Who Choose To Use It Do Not Cause Harm To Society.

It Is Fiscally Irresponsible To Continue Investing My (and yours) Tax Dollars Towards The Eradication Of Cannabis!

Vaporizer June 26, 2009, 3:27 PM

This is a fantastic article. It really shows that all the pot smokers out there are not just the 17-50 Male crowd

Bobby June 26, 2009, 7:45 PM

At one time it was illegal for women to Vote! At one time Black people were slaves! At one time Alcohol was illegal. Just because marijuana is currently illegal, does not mean people have to suffer by obeying the law. Using marijuana should be a choice. Marijuana has only been illegal for about 75 years now. It was once the most useful and profitable crop in the world. Marijuana and hemp provide food, clothing, shelter and medicine for millions of people in the world.

Mel June 26, 2009, 9:06 PM

Bobby, at one time cocaine was one of the most usefull drugs as well, even used for children should that be legal too…Dels, for your information my issues with pot were instilled in me by watching my family members use over the years to the point were they depend on it would never go on vacations ect. for fear of not being able to use. If thats not some sort of addiction mental or physical than I dont know what is. Ive had family members move to a different state just to be able to use legally. I personally dont get the fasination and the greatness everyone seems to have for it but from what Ive witnessed it CAN be an addictive drug. I guess what it comes down too is none users would probly never be able to convinse users they shouldnt use and visa versa. So with that hopefully the Government will continue to make it illiegal for recreational use which otherwise would be in my opinion a huge mistake and if you cant deal with your life without using pot try finding a good therapist at least thats legal.

Dels June 26, 2009, 10:38 PM

Mel, I understand what you are saying because I have seen similar negatives but I feel those are people’s choices. In my experience, those same ppl tend to have addictive personalities so if its not ganja it is something else. By your views then alcohol should ALSO be illegal but no, the government has entrusted us to our own judgment.
either way, I should have been more clear on my stance, I am actually indifferent to this issue as I have never felt the “need” for any substance in order to get thru my days.

Bobby June 27, 2009, 3:50 AM

Mel, it sounds as though you have many family members who smoke weed. Do you phone the cops on them? Do you want them to go to jail? Is that your solution?….Just because your family cannot handle marijuana, doesnt mean that it has to be illegal. It helps millions of people everyday. It provides food, Clothing, jobs and medicine. If your family needs help for marijuana abuse, they wont get it in jail…..If you really do some scientific research, you will find that marijuana is about as addictive as coffee, and it is impossible to overdose on marijuana…….Your marijuana laws are sure not deterring anyone from using, but they are making gangs very rich.

RachelAZ June 27, 2009, 5:08 AM

I think it’s hilarious that people think smoking weed is good for them…it’s just as bad if not WORSE than smoking cigs! Not to mention it’s illegal (unless prescribed in CA). Sorry, but my child is more important then me getting high and possibly going to jail. Let’s get our priorities straight

FredaMae June 27, 2009, 10:12 AM

Rachel and other’s:
Prove your Statement’s with Facts and Science, Please.
You Simply Mandate Your personal Beliefs upon others.
I differ in my Opinion. Neither of us are wrong. Cannabis (as you demonstrate) Is NOT For Every Person. Thats good. But Do Not Try To Dictate and Enforce Your Beliefs On Others When There Is NO Consequence To Your Life (or anybody else’s) for The Responsible (majority of consumers)Adult Use Of Cannabis.

It’s Anti-Freedom and it’s silly.

mercaties June 28, 2009, 5:26 AM

I think that Taxing pot would be a little difficult to enforce due to all the smuggling but if it was legalized our court systems would save billions. A relative of mine works as a clerk for the county courthouse and she said it’s such a waste of taxpayer money to actually arrest people for pot smoking. Most of the people who are arrested just pay a fine and don’t actually serve any jail time. While I myself do not smoke (I get random drug tests at my job) I know more middle class working parent’s who smoke than don’t smoke. My husband has a great job, is a great dad and he smokes on a regular basis, to help with back pain. I would mutch rather be around someone who smokes pot than someone who is drunk. It amazes me that alcohol is legal but pot isn’t. Pot is legal in most countries. There were a few posts comparing weed to any street drug not so! Heroine, Meth, Cocaine, Crack are all physically addicting and cause severe violent behavior and are usually chemically altered. Pot is all natural and has a calming effect it’s no different than taking a pain pill which millions of people do on a daily basis.

sarah June 28, 2009, 4:08 PM

I support legalization . It’s not like the goverment has made it out to be , it does not make you shoot ppl , or run over little children thats what alchole does to you and hard drugs , and this is legal because ? let me ask you somthing . Have yoou ever noticed the profit we make of weed ? You see avertisemints all over the place weather it’s on a t-shirt or a bumber sticker ,We make money of it already , do you see avertisements for crack or meth ? NO ! How are we suppose to tell our youth that this is a bad drug when it comes forom the ground ? It was put here for a reason evrything was put on this earth for us to use and we turn it away . I am a mother of a 3 year old and yes I smoke pot, responsibly . Im not going to die from it , but alchole and cigarrets i will. I will not lie to my children.sign me up for the next rally ill be there .

FE June 29, 2009, 6:12 AM


christy June 29, 2009, 6:26 AM

Amazing!!! I too am a smoking mom and and do agree with most moms on here-It really helps relieve stress. I smoked before I was pregnant and didnt start again until my daughter was about 2. During the time I didnt smoke there were many times I was super stressed out. Im a 34 yr old, married mother who now has a puff or 2 when I need to destress!

Anonymous June 29, 2009, 6:36 AM

Sometimes I wish I was able to smoke it. I have not for over 2 years. I work for one of the companies that give hair tests. Before I got this job, I would smoke to sleep. I have terrible trouble sleeping. If it were legal, you can bet I would light up again!! Even though it sometimes makes me paranoid, and makes me feel like i cannot breath.. It would def be better that the alcohol i drink that is ruining my liver!! (-:

gail June 29, 2009, 6:36 AM

I have smoked pot practically all my life; I am now 52. It is much safer than alcohol-which as we all know is legal-and the fact that it remains illegal is a testament to the powers of lobbyists in this country. Why is the US government so uninterested in the tax dollars this could generate? A question I have posed for years, with no clear answer ever given.

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