I use Medical Cannabis and have smoked joints predominately for the last 20 years, with very few negative side effects. I'm an advocate and have strong feelings about my rights to medicate. For the last two years, I have worked for a local Cannabis Recourse Centre and I write content for several online blogs. An executive I work with, who has little experience with Cannabis ‘smoke shamed’ me at a recent meeting.
There was no mention of the supposed ‘health risks’ during this conversation, the comments were more about how seeing women smoking joint’s is not ‘classy’. Like smoking Cannabis is dirty or wrong somehow. Even after considering the source, I'm still very angry. Personally, I admire anyone who takes control of their own health and is brave enough to share what they are doing with the public.
There are plenty of social media profiles that I admire and I feel the images of the ladies puffing on a blunt to be inspiring. Clearly, the average person still see’s smoking as a negative behavior, the stigma in society is still very prevalent. Even within the Cannabis industry, which is where I should be safe to be myself.
It’s easy for healthy people to judge and to be self-righteous of those who use unconventional methods to control their own suffering. I could easily say that a drunk woman holding a beer is not ‘classy’ either and I guarantee there’s no medical benefit from alcohol. Let’s make this clear, there is nothing wrong with smoking Cannabis!
It is important to bring attention to the issue of ‘smoke shaming’ if it is going to change. Even if it means alienating myself at work for something I believe in. No one has the right to judge someone else for how they choose to medicate. I'm not doing anything wrong, it is my choice under The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
What now? I'm standing up for myself and the other ladies on my team. We should not be made to feel bad by our own management.
I will be sharing this story and I encourage you to get online and smoke your Cannabis!
Let’s start an online campaign, #SmokeShamingIsWrong.
Who’s with me?