Q & A: Weedmama
Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself and your personal experience with cannabis?
A: I’m a mom of two children- my son is 5 and my daughter will be 9 in December. I’ve used cannabis since I was 18 years old and smoked it regularly for 16 years until 2008 when I quit because it was triggering anxiety. I went back to cannabis in 2015 after my son was born because I was having pain.
Q: Cannabis & Mom’s have really become a hot topic; especially when talking about alcohol and cannabis. Did your cannabis habit change once you had children? Did you ever contemplate not smoking because you had children?
A: My husband switched from smoking cannabis to vaporizing and he reintroduced me to cannabis with low temperature(dry herb) vaping. I was having pain during sex and just a little cannabis vaporized at a low temperature completely got rid of the pain and I was able to enjoy sex again.
I wrote about it for my website and call it "velvet vagina" as that's how it felt after using cannabis.
Q: It’s socially acceptable and not considered taboo when Mom’s relax to have a glass of wine, do you believe cannabis to be comparable? Have you ever received negative feedback for consuming?
A: For many years I kept my cannabis use private, never told any of my mom friends and I always felt a little out of place, or like I was “that mom” as most of the moms I knew drank wine and none ever mentioned using cannabis however their husbands would talk to me about it freely.
I also found that wine culture was getting much more normalized and moms would declare wine as their parenting juice and that it made them a better mom. However when moms who used cannabis said the same thing, they were scrutinized for their choice.
I realized there needed to be more outspoken moms who use cannabis, so I decided to start Weed Mama. Cannabis is very different than wine however the reason for using it can be the same. As a parent I use cannabis at the end of the day to unwind, wine is used for the exact same reason.
Many people don’t know that you can use cannabis and not get high the way you can drink a glass of wine and not get drunk and that’s what I teach with Weed Mama.
Q: There is a strong correlation when it comes to having a glass of wine and smoking a joint (we kind of consider it the same thing!). Do you hide your cannabis usage from your children? If not, how have you explained it to them?
A: I don’t hide my use from my children, in fact I’m very open about it however I don’t vaporize in front of them unless I’m outside, for health reasons. If I’m not going to hide drinking a glass of wine in front of them, I don’t see why I should hide using cannabis.
I also grow cannabis plants in my backyard so my kids know all about the plants, they know it can be a medicine and that it’s for adults to use however sometimes kids who are very sick use it to feel better.
Q: Any advice on breaking the stigma of cannabis and parenting?
A: The best way to break the stigma around parents using cannabis is for more parents to be open about their use (where it’s legal). The other way is through educating people about cannabis, explain why you use it and how it makes you feel. I’ve found most people are pretty open minded about it, I’m seeing a shift in society.
That being said, some people are still very against it and vocally so, education is how we can changes minds.
Q: Any advice on when to smoke and when not to smoke as a parent?
A: If parents want to give cannabis a try, I recommend trying it when the kids aren’t around to see how it makes them feel and experiment with different methods, strains (cultivars) and doses. Cannabis does have side effects, however there’s ways to use cannabis so you can get a mild effect without intoxication and the side effects and that’s through micro dosing. Micro dosing is using small amounts of cannabis and choosing cultivars that are high in CBD. There’s several on the market, high CBD is 5% or higher and low THC is under 10% usually high CBD strains are low in THC and these are an excellent choice for parents as CBD reduces the side effects of THC and helps to calm nerves.
The best way to micro dose is with vaporizing. I don’t recommend edibles until someone is familiar with them as they last a long time and can take up to 2 hours to fully kick in, by then if you’ve taken too much it’s going to be awhile before it wears off. If you’d rather not inhale cannabis, I recommend a tincture under the tongue as it’s fast acting and wears off faster than an edible.
There's other ways to enjoy the benefits of cannabis without any intoxication and these products will be entering the market soon, such as bath bombs (a must try!!) infused creams and salves and/or simply sticking to CBD only. You can get cultivars that have insignificant amounts of THC, also pills, tinctures and vape pens when they enter the market also have CBD only options. These are great for moms on the go who need a bit of calm in the day but need to stay focused. As more products enter the market I'll be sharing reviews on WeedMama.ca.
About Shannon Chiarenza
Shannon Chiarenza founded Weed Mama in 2018 after seeing a need for more outspoken moms who use cannabis. As a long time consumer, she knew that once cannabis was legalized in Canada, people would need good information on how to use cannabis and the various products available. Weed Mama teaches women, especially moms how to integrate cannabis into their wellness routine in an open, inclusive space that sees cannabis as a wonderful tool to help you feel better.