If you’re a stoner that just so happens to come from a family of stoners, smoking weed with your relatives is basically a rite of passage once you reach the legal age.
It’s an elusive and highly sought-after experience which usually ends up being pretty awesome, although there can be some rather awkward drawbacks as well. A 2015 survey suggests that 1 in 10 parents across the United States are regular cannabis consumers (defined as 6 or more times a year), and out of those, 47% say they have either used it in front of their children, shared it with them, or both.
Since we’re optimists here at Royal Queen Seeds, we’ll start with the positives. If you’re a parent, smoking with your (adult) child can seem like a strange and counterintuitive concept, almost like you’re being a bad influence. Heavy drinking and other drugs are definitely an issue, however, the contrary is true when it comes to toking up with your offspring.
More often than not, it’s a bonding experience that builds trust and opens the lines of communication between people. “If they’re going to have a joint, do it with them”, encourages British investor and philanthropist Richard Branson during his 2016 keynote speech at the Sage Summit at McCormick Place in Chicago. “Don’t let them sneak off and do it on their own”.
Another pro to look forward to is the new level of bonding most people experience when smoking with relatives. It could be anything from sharing an old story of times past, to learning a new smoking technique or rolling tip, or laughing at a hilarious joke you’ve never heard. It also simultaneously creates a feeling of youth in older relatives and maturity in younger ones. The younger relatives feel free and trusted, while the parent feels more accepted by their child.
A lot of people don’t experience this negative aspect, although it happens to be the most common one amongst people who don’t enjoy smoking with their parents: just plain, downright awkwardness. For many individuals, particularly those who grew up with stricter or more conservative parents, getting stoned together is a line that can never comfortably be crossed.
Regardless of how close you are with your family, there are certain things that you may not want to say or reveal about yourself to them, as you would with a friend, for instance. And since some people tend to get a little too comfortable and loose-lipped when they’re stoned, that could make for some thorny situations.
Parents face some issues of their own when choosing to partake in a smoke sesh with their kids. Aside from the aforementioned awkwardness, parents deal with a lot of judgment and backlash for smoking in general, but especially with their children. And yes, this happens even in areas where cannabis is now legal recreationally.
WHAT’S A STONER’S TAKE ON THIS?
We’ve gathered some quotes from several stoners we know and some on the internet to get an idea of what some real people think about this topic:
“The whole thing lasted three minutes, was very awkward, and we never talked about it again”, described 26-year-old Eric about the first and only time he smoked weed with his mother. “I didn’t enjoy it. I thought it was funny, but that’s just not a part of life we need to participate in together”.
Others felt more pleased about the situation though, like 25-year-old Lindsay, who says that smoking weed with her parents made them appear more like real people to her. “With the weed came stories about what they used to be like before they had kids”, she said. “Before they just kept that part of themselves from us. I think they also started to see us as adults”.
Similar thoughts from Steven, a 27-year-old from the United States. “Usually, your parent feels obligated to take on the role of the mature caretaker, but when you’re high, your filter is a little lowered”, he mentions. “It would be great to be in the same mental state as your parent and have a true one-on-one conversation with no topic being off limits”.
Melissa Etheridge, a singer-songwriter and mother, had a lighthearted and positive take on her experience. “It was funny at first, and then they realised, it’s a very natural, end-of-the-day [thing] … And it brings you much closer. I’d much rather have a smoke with my grown kids than a drink”.
SO, WHAT’S THE NEXT STEP?
Now it’s time to tell your relative—be it your child, parent, aunt, sibling, etc—and try to make smoking plans ASAP. Of course, no one can guarantee that they’ll embrace this extracurricular activity, but there are certain scenarios that would ensure the information is better received. It’s best to have some good and thought-provoking reasons for why you smoke before you enter the conversation (better than just “because I like it”).
Your relative’s reaction also greatly hinges on your current life situation and how healthy your smoking habits are. If you don’t have a job, live in filth, and do nothing but sit around and smoke, more than likely your relative won’t be interested in lighting up with you—even if it’s something they do in their own free time.
To summarise, it’s all case by case. So take a step back to look at the situation, and if the odds are in your favour, go ahead and ask your relatives to get stoned with you at the next cookout or family gathering. Who knows, they just might surprise you by pulling out some fire to match!