By Simone Fischer
Women often feel that if they smoke weed or open up about weed they will be judged or not as highly regarded. Generally speaking, when men smoke weed or open up about it people usually remain indifferent. There is a double standard at work that devalues women's experience with weed that men are often free from. Women need to own their experiences and not give a rat's ass about what other people think.
Because women were blessed/cursed with the ability to make babies, the conversation around marijuana gets complicated. Childless women can experience shame or guilt when opening up about marijuana, but the backlash mothers endure is often much worse. I blame essentialism and the oppressive consequences it can have on mothers who use marijuana due to gender roles. People don't bat an eye if mommy needs a glass of wine after a long day, but it hits the fan if they smoke weed. There have been countless stories about families being ripped apart by the Child and Family Services Agency because of marijuana, and it is heart wrenching to watch happen.
3.) Lonely stoner-chick problems
As a female habitual smoker of weed, I had a hard time ﬁnding other women who also smoked. Most of the time I would smoke with my male friends and male dealers and the only women I came into contact with were their wives or girlfriends. I did not know of any female dealers and hardly any of my female friends smoked, so I always felt like the lonely stoner chick. As a woman I felt isolated because hardly any woman I knew smoked, and who likes smoking alone all the time (unless I'm chilling with dudes). It wasn't until I got picked up and started working at medical marijuana dispensary (Brightside) when I ﬁnally started meeting other women who smoked. Basically, it sucks feeling like you have no other women to connect to within the cannabis industry except 420 nurses who function under the male gaze. Which brings me to my next point.
4.) For-proﬁt sexual objectiﬁcation of women
Walking into a dispensary and seeing a young twenty-something women in a 420 nurse outﬁt isn't my idea of a great ﬁrst impression. No slut-shaming intended because I think women should be able to dress however they want, but the overt sexual objectiﬁcation of women in the cannabis industry is a big turn-off to a lot of women. When dispensaries shamelessly use women's bodies to attract business, what kind of message is that sending to potential female smokers and female smokers in general? It's sad that there are so many great female activists in the marijuana movement that women can relate to, but all we are shown are sexualized women. It makes it seem as if the cannabis industry doesn't take women and the role we play in society seriously, which doesn't turn women on to smoking or wanting to open up about it.
5.) It's Illegal
I probably could have summed up the entire post with this, but where's the fun in that? If marijuana was legal in the ﬁrst place, none of this black market garbage would continue to persist. Women wouldn't feel sketched out about getting in trouble, losing their kids, or losing their freedoms. This isn't to say that all of our problems will be solved with legalization, but it's a helluva start. The cannabis industry needs to reevaluate it's relationship with women and understand the pivotal role women play in the legalization of marijuana.
Source: Brightside PDX