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Recently, I decided to sit down with my 10 (now 11) daughter and discuss with her the possibility of my switching from painkillers to marijuana. I felt it was important for her to know and be aware of, since I was looking into consumables, such as candies, sodas and liquid. I didn't want her to come into my room, see it and eat it. So I explained it to her. She was really excited that I let her in on this and explained to her the negative effects I was feeling from being on extreme dosages of painkillers. There were several other reasons I decided to do this as well.
- I showed her the different types of packaging everything would be coming in and what to look out for when it comes to these products. Whenever I purchase something from the dispensary, I make sure to show her what it looks like so she doesn't think "OOOH candy" and grab some. She has told me a few times, "Mom, it has a marijuana leaf on it, I think I know the difference!" Point taken.
- For me the most important thing is making sure she doesn't think I am a drug addict or doing this all day. She is at that age, to where they teach "drugs are bad," but group everything into two sections of "BAD" or "GOOD." This is why I explained the benefits for me, which included horrible depression while on painkillers and intense mood swings. I just wasn't the same person anymore and was becoming a shell of who I once was. I basically brought up all the crazy things that had happened in the past and explained how the painkillers were what caused all those issues.
- This opens a door for more communications. There are several other things I have explained to her as well, not just about marijuana. She knows she cans ask or tell me anything and that we have a certain respect for one another. I know some people might think this type of relationship doesn't work, but I am still a parent first. She knows right from wrong. I think that is a plus!
- Another really important thing to me was making sure she didn't come in my room if I decided to smoke. I don't want her smelling like the stuff or ingesting it. So if I am going to smoke, I let her know that I am not feeling well and have to smoke. She understands it, which is good. So she will tell me to let her know when I am done.
- I don't like secrets. I want to be open with her as much as I can. Yes, there are things I wont share with her. But somethings I believe are important to discuss. I feel like opening the lines of communication in one way or another is important. I felt like she was at an age to where she could understand. It also makes her more curious about the different medical conditions I have. We can discuss this more as time goes on.
After writing these five reasons down, I realize how crazy it is and how unsure others might be. I know that we need to protect our kids to a point, but I also think that this is one way to protect them. By teaching them things they won't learn anywhere else. I mean, she might learn some from kids, but I feel that it is important as a parent to discuss the personal things with kids. To me, this was personal. This was about her mom, not feeling well when taking painkillers and all the negative side effects I have had with them.
I believe every child and parenting situation is going to be different than the next. So it's up to us as parents to decide when and if we should discuss this with our children. I feel like I made the right decision in discussing this with her and I am happy with my choices.