Time to throw out all those “wine mom” memes. According to a survey of 1,122 Americans conducted by Yahoo News and Marist College in April, 65 percent of the people who have ever tried cannabis are parents, and of those who currently use weed, parents make up 54 percent. And more than half of this group have kids under age 18. Another survey of 10,000 California cannabis consumers conducted by Eaze Insights found that 63 percent of parents who consume cannabis do so daily, with many simply reserving a puff or two for the end of the evening after the kids are in bed.
Even with cannabis acceptance on the rise, people still get their undies all twisted when kids are brought into the conversation: “Think of the children!!” Seventy-nine percent of the folks surveyed by Yahoo said they would have less respect for a parent who got high in front of their kid. But many of these same people would think nothing of drinking wine or beer in front of their children, let alone of being a little buzzed while parenting. On the other side of the coin, 94 percent of those parents who smoke weed and have underage children have never consumed in front of their kids, but 81 percent of them think telling them about their usage would be the right thing to do.
Many parents feel it makes them better parents. Cannabis is prescribed for its ability to lift and level out moods, and many strains can reduce stress and increase the giggles. Many parents say it helps them get out of “adult mind” and into “kid mind,” making playtime more fun and helping them let go of stress and genuinely be present for their kids.
But this isn’t just about Mom or Dad needing to take the edge off—there is also a real trend for multigenerational harm reduction. The Eaze study found that of the 78 percent of parents surveyed who drank alcohol, a whopping 88 percent had reduced their drinking—and in fact, parents were 52 percent more likely to replace drinking with grass than their childless peers. And the survey saw even more impressive numbers with opiates.
Seventy-three percent of parents have had “the talk” about drugs with their kids, according to Yahoo, and 47 percent of parents who use cannabis do it with their adult children. That makes sense, as millennials are now the largest group of cannabis consumers in the U.S. Contrast that with previous generations: Only 49 percent of Gen-Xers claim their parents talked with them about drugs; only 28 percent of baby boomers do. Perhaps the younger generation’s liberal, permissive attitude is helping boomers finally come back around to openly enjoying and supporting weed as they did in the 1960s and ’70s. That’s potentially a huge transformation, and perhaps the paradigm shift that the cannabis world needs to overcome prohibition once and for all.