Women & Weed: A Candid Conversation Part 1 – Pregnancy

Updated: Aug 11, 2020

Before we begin, for my novice readers here are some clarifying points (my experienced consumers can skip to the next paragraph 😊)

  1. Marijuana, weed, ganja… all the same thing in popular culture (along with many other names)

  2. Marijuana and Hemp are NOT the same but both are cannabis (stay with me)

Hemp


Marijuana/Weed/Ganja


  1. I know I just shocked you with this because you hear about cannabis and automatically assume it’s weed. That’s how many use it, but hemp is in fact from the cannabis plant as well. See next point for differences.

  2. Both marijuana and hemp contain THC (the “high” compound) The difference is that hemp contains less than .3% which in turn will NOT get you high)

  3. THC & CBD are only 2 of hundreds of cannabinoids contained in the cannabis plant

  4. There are multiple ways to consume marijuana and hemp including but not limited to: smoking (which can happen from a joint, dabbing, vaping), ingesting (by mouth or absorbing through the skin) … wait I’ll just do a masterclass later. Just know that there isn’t just one way to indulge in marijuana

  5. I will be using marijuana and weed interchangeably throughout this series. I apologize in advance.

Legal weed, party for everyone?

Finally, legalization of marijuana, or weed as it’s commonly referred to; in many states has arrived. Whether it’s recreational use (10 states plus DC), medicinal use (32 states), we are seeing a steady increase in women consuming marijuana related products. Hemp has also been legalized in all 50 states for general consumption as well.

Note: I am not naïve to the fact that women were consuming long before legalization but not as publicly as we are seeing now. In fact, if you research, cannabis was used in China, Persia & other nations; to induce contractions, prevent miscarriages/stillbirths & reduce postnatal bleeding. You can read more on the historical use of cannabis, especially in midwifery, here.

In Part 1 of this series I want to tackle the stigma of pregnant and/or breastfeeding mothers consuming both marijuana and hemp products and our society’s response to it.

In this blog I will commonly refer to The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists as ACOG.


Before Pregnancy…

Prior to even becoming pregnant, many women consume weed for a variety of reasons. For some, it is purely recreational but honestly very few women are just smoking weed to get “high”. MOST women, I would venture to say, are indeed attempting to treat a much deeper issue going on. It may be pain, inflammation, anxiety and/or stress. Keep in mind it could also be a combination of many of these things.

Being a woman, especially a black woman… speaking from experience here 😊, can be challenging. Whether you are working a 9-5 or pursuing your passion of entrepreneurship; the stresses of everyday life are a lot. The pharmaceutical industry would have us relying heavily on medicine derived, in its inception, in a factory/laboratory. This includes medications that have severe side effects, as can be seen in any number of drug commercials during your favorite TV show.

Marijuana and hemp have proven to be a holistic alternative to those harsh drugs that provide the same type of relief. Realizing that life happens and that our needs as being whole women need to be met, for many women pregnancy is not a reason to stop consuming.

So, once a woman finds out she is pregnant, the real question is, do they TRULY need to stop consuming?


During Pregnancy…

What do the white coats say…

Due to the fact that marijuana is still federally illegal, there is limited research on the true impacts of marijuana not only to adults but fetuses as well, so the general recommendation in the medical community is to abstain from marijuana products altogether.

The