It struck a cord with this cannabis using father, who describes his personal experience as a parent and cannabis user below:
'I am a responsible user of cannabis, I have decent employment and I provide for my family'
"I'm responding to your article on News24 with regards to using cannabis as a parent. I am a 38-year-old white male, husband, father and a user of cannabis. I would like to remain anonymous as, even though the law has recently changed, there are still obvious stigmas attached to it.
"I started smoking when I was 21 and have continued doing so on and off for years, however the last three or four years I have become a regular user due to the fact that cannabis oil is now available and it feels like a healthier alternative to actually smoking it.
"I am a responsible user of cannabis. I have decent employment, I always show up for work on time, complete goals that I set out to achieve and have never been under the influence of cannabis at work. I pay my bills and I provide for my family.
What are your thoughts? Send your stories and comments by emailing to firstname.lastname@example.org and we could publish your letter. Do let us know if you'd like to stay anonymous.
- Also see: Does dagga make you a bad parent?
'When the appropriate time comes and they ask me if I have tried it I will be open and honest with them'
"I am a loving father. My kids are my world and I would never drive under the influence or do anything where my use of cannabis could possibly negatively affect them in any way. They do not know that I use it as they are still too young, however when the appropriate time comes and they ask me if I have tried it I will be open and honest with them about it. I have been "stoned" around them at home, however, I believe, and my wife agrees with me, I am infinitely more patient and kinder with them when I am.
"If they would like to use cannabis one day I will leave that decision up to them, but I would strongly urge them not do so before the age of 21 as I have read reports that it can affect brain development in adolescents in the same way that alcohol does, though it seems that after the age of 18 it no longer has this effect.
"My wife knows that I use it although she doesn't partake herself. She was against it at the beginning of our relationship (we've been very happily married for nearly sixteen years) and I stopped as she had asked me to. However, she soon realised from spending time with other users that it had much less of an effect than alcohol. Now she condones it openly and she does not mind that I use it. I hardly ever drink, I have been drunk on one or two occasions in the last fifteen years.
- Also see: Kid’s book about dope
'Don't let the few bad apples drag the rest of us down'
"To put it bluntly, I love cannabis. I believe it makes me a better person. Though it has helped me with back pain in the past I do not claim to use it for medicinal purposes. I do not agree with claims that it is a miracle cure for cancer and several other ailments, simply because there is not enough evidence to back this up. I would love for proper research to be done to establish whether any of these claims are true in the same way that all actual medicine is tested.
"I agree that cannabis is not for everyone. It does not suit some people and it negatively affects their lives, but in the same way that alcohol, sex or gambling does to others, yet these vices are legal. The majority of people are responsible when it comes to alcohol, sex and gambling, and it is the same for weed. Don't let the few bad apples drag the rest of us down."
Do you have a similar story? Or are you completely against the idea that a parent should be using cannabis? Tell us by emailing to email@example.com and we could publish your letter. Do let us know if you'd like to stay anonymous.
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