Can weed make you a better parent? If you smoke fat joints and channel Snoop Dogg, maybe not. But if you vape CBD? Totally, dude.
Parents need their escapes — their “Calgon, take me away” moments. Wine is lovely, but the morning after is a challenge even after one glass. (As one gets older, wine seems more potent, which makes me want to cry.) Imbibing real THC-laden pot is a commitment: You have to find a dealer — in most states, including New York, it’s illegal — and the potential paranoia caused by some strains can be a turn off to parents, as can the lasting psychedelic effects.
So what’s an overburdened, sleep-deprived mom or dad to do, without shirking parental duties? CBD might be the answer.
CBD (or cannabidiol), which is extracted from the cannabis plant, is holy water to believers, who swear it can prevent hangovers, fight stress, aid sleep and soothe muscles, among other claims. And, it doesn’t come with any reefer madness: With less than 0.3 percent THC, it doesn’t get you stoned, give you the munchies or make you ponder your deepest thoughts.
To nonbelievers, it’s ridiculously ubiquitous snake oil. All sorts of places, from SoulCycle studios and cafes to upscale restaurants and bars offer CBD-infused lotions, coffee, smoothies, chocolate-chip cookies, cocktails, lollipops and even cheeseburgers. Silly.
One Park Slope mother I know toggles her vaping between THC and CBD oil — whenever she is feeling the stress of her three boys, she vapes one or the other, hiding in the bathroom. She’s not sure about the CBD. “I think I feel it?” she says, tentatively. A few of her pals — the ones who don’t like being high as a kite — like CBD because, as she says, “it kills the edge that comes with the stress of being a parent.”
Now, smack in the heart of Momville — Park Slope — is Hidden Hemp, which claims to be Brooklyn’s first legal CBD dispensary. A friend and I wandered in and were slapped with what seemed like the strong, grassy scent of fresh marijuana, but it was actually CBD buds. Even though the shop only sells CBD products, I felt illicit being there.
The sales person put me at ease as she rattled off info about vapes and different types of CBD flowers — some for relaxing, some for creativity and some for energy boosts. I chose an environmentally-incorrect disposable CBD vape pen for a pricey $40. The pen also held the promise of additional relaxation through aromatherapy, with scents of rose, cinnamon and jasmine.
My pal, also a mom, bought CBD-infused gummy rings (also $40!). She and I compared notes later. Her edible possibly made her sleepy, she says, or perhaps she was already tired, “but just because something doesn’t smack you in the face with some sort of feeling doesn’t mean it doesn’t work.”
Whether CBD has an actual chemical effect or not doesn’t really matter. Rooftop CBD vaping, meditating for 10 minutes or having a glass of cabernet sauvignon are all mother’s little helpers. They’re meant to make us better parents — to love, help and guide our kids without scolding, yelling or getting annoyed. You might be familiar with the parental mantras: Ignore the negative, reward the positive. Don’t react to negative behavior or words. Don’t take the behavior/words personally.
In other words: Be chill.
When I asked about CBD, my therapist said, “Whatever works.” And for me, taking a five-minute break from the chaos with my CBD pen works. I can reassess the family situation and my response to it, feel re-invigorated and ready to patiently face any drama, be it homework or dinner. Sure, a mile run would also do the trick, but one doesn’t have time for that when you’re in the thick of it.
The bad news: CBD is not regulated, so you don’t truly know what you’re buying, and very few scientific studies exist to support the theory that eating a CBD cupcake will lessen your anxiety or cure your insomnia. But if you take it for what it is, a time-out for yourself, you might be pleasantly surprised by the positive feelings you get in return.
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