Pregnant friend smoking weed.

(114 Posts)
firefliesinjune Wed 14-Nov-12 14:39:49

I really dont know what to do about this. Its about my friend - well we aren't really close - we are neighbours who get along ok, our oldest DS go to school together.

She is nearly half way through her pregnancy but she is still smoking weed and quite a lot. She isn't "stoned" all day long she actually works most days but mostly in the evening she is smoking a lot of weed. I know this to be true as we have talked about it. She says she is too stressed to stop. Her husband smokes too.

Just recently she had very bad stomach pains and she has told me that this pregnancy is more painful than her last. I worry about the effects on her baby.

She knows I dont really approve but she isn't really the sort to care. I dont know whether I should maybe mention my concerns to the family mentor at the school who knows us both and is a really nice lady? I just feel so awful knowing she may be damaging her baby and I am not doing anything about it.

Should I be minding my own business?! If its none of my business then tell me and I will accept that and try not to get involved. I am not a busy body or gossip but this has been playing on my mind.

I dont have anything against cannabis to be honest, as long as you aren't harming anyone you can do as you like I dont care but she is harming her baby isn't she?

Any advice gratefully accepted!

StarbugEnterprise Wed 14-Nov-12 15:19:27

YANBU!

This is as bad as drinking when pregnant! In fact that it might be that if she smokes it enough that it could cause her baby to become addicted to the nicotine that she puts in the joint and can give her baby mental health issues. Eg, paranoia, memory loss etc.

Maybe tell your friend you a worried and listen to her side of the story - is there a hidden reason she is smoking it? Don't patronise her or make her feel uncomfortable. If it doesn't work then you may have to accept her baby/body her rules, no matter how much you disagree!

firefliesinjune Wed 14-Nov-12 15:56:58

Thanks for the reply! She has smoked for a long time - she is quite a highly stressed lady so she finds the only way she can relax is with a joint. She told me she wanted to cut down gradually but she gets it off one of our mutual friends and she is around there every other day picking more up. I thought that the pains would make her think twice but that evening she was straight out picking up again. Its crazy. I dont want to cause lots of trouble for her but I worry about that baby!

shockers Wed 14-Nov-12 16:00:40

YANBU!

I hate these kind of threads because someone will always come along with the 'Her body, her rules' argument... well it's not just her body any more (this is not directed at you BTW starbug, I agree with your post), she is now carrying a child.

valiumredhead Wed 14-Nov-12 16:03:48

But it IS her choice, sadly sad

buggerama Wed 14-Nov-12 16:04:39

Is she stupid? Does she not know this isnt good for her baby?

If not, then butt out of her business

ReallyTired Wed 14-Nov-12 16:06:44

YANBU.

If you do report her, it will be end of the friendship. Undoulbably she will hate you for ever. If you report her the school then the school will inform social services. Social services may well take way her children if she and her partner makes no effort to stop smoking canabis. There is little doult that it will cause her "trouble".

I don't think you can say "her baby/body her rules" when it is another human being being affected.

Its a sad situation. She needs to find alternative ways for managing stress.

whatsforyou Wed 14-Nov-12 16:08:44

I would also be a bit concerned for the child she already has too. If she is so stressed she is smoking it all the time then she is probably smoking it in front of them and children can get the effects from passive smoking sad
If you've tried to mention it to her and got no where then I think I would be mentioning something to the school, they may have already got concerns about the older child and you could just be filling in the blanks. Not a nice situation to be in but you sound genuinely worried and at least this way you will know you have done what you can.

MrsWhoGivesaShit Wed 14-Nov-12 16:09:38

i am sure she is not stupid and realises that it is not good for the baby, so she obviously doesn't care. how will you be causing any trouble for her? you will express your concern, she will ignore you. end of.

Bumpstart Wed 14-Nov-12 16:12:47

A brief Internet search suggests that use of cannabis in pregnancy can be associated with low birth weight. It is not associated with a greater risk of perinatal mortality. Can anyone come up with any actual physical harm associated with cannabis use during pregnancy?

Without something concrete to worry about, I personally would not interfere.

Is she seeking advice about the pains?

valiumredhead Wed 14-Nov-12 16:13:46

I don't think you can say "her baby/body her rules" when it is another human being being affected

But you can - the mother gets to decide what she does or doesn't do while pregnant, and while I think it's wrong and my eyebrows would shoot of my forehead if I knew someone doing this, we do not live in a world where the baby's needs/wants outweigh the mother's choice.

YANBU..the woman is an idiot.

Not that there is anything you can do about it though....it is her body therefore it is her rules, no matter how bloody irresponsible they are.

valiumredhead Wed 14-Nov-12 16:17:07

Yep, she is an idiot.

thebody Wed 14-Nov-12 16:18:51

If she asks you directly then tell her you are worried for her and the baby.

Not much else to do is there ad IT IS her body and her choice.

MrsMuddyPuddles Wed 14-Nov-12 16:23:45

we do not live in a world where the baby's needs/wants outweigh the mother's choice. Thank God, and may someone shoot the men people who are trying to make it otherwise in the US.

Back on topic... Op, you say "she is quite a highly stressed lady so she finds the only way she can relax is with a joint"

Have you (gently) approached the idea of getting anti anxiety meds off the GP with her? Although it has been many years since I last tried pot, I find that diazapam from my GP offers a similar level of relaxed feeling without the feeling that "this drug is in control, I'm not!" If the topic of "it's the only way I can relax" comes up, maybe bring up a visit to the GP to discuss stress and anxiety and get free (or cheap if you're in England) medicine, rather than self-medicating with pot. If she does go down that route, she really NEEDS to make sure the GP knows about her self medication.

I feel quite sad for her; I hope she gets the help she needs for her mental health, as she must be suffering quite a bit if she's donig the pot just to stop the stress. sad

whatsforyou Wed 14-Nov-12 16:27:49

valiumredhead
Actually there are an increasing number of pre-birth case conferences happening now where mothers are identified as high risk during pregnancy, often for issues such as drug and alcohol abuse. Obviously the child cannot be removed from the mother before birth but plans can be put in place on how to best support the family when the child is born and if necessary this can be removal of the child at birth although this would be extremely rare and only in very serious cases.

valiumredhead Wed 14-Nov-12 16:30:34

whats yes, and where previous children have been removed and the mother goes on to have more pregnancies then obviously future children can be either taken away or watched very closely.

BUT no one can stop you drinking or smoking while actually pregnant, so it IS the woman's choice ultimately.

whatsforyou Wed 14-Nov-12 16:35:25

Absolutely, but there may be consequences of that choice and I think sometimes that gets a bit lost.
Families who may be dismissive of any impact of their behaviour on the unborn baby (I work with Mum's who will tell you there is no evidence that smoking during pregnancy is dangerous) however if they were aware that they are at a higher risk of having SS involvement they may well think twice or be more likely to look for support at a less threatening level.

Dahlen Wed 14-Nov-12 16:43:27

You could, of course, take the stance that cannabis is illegal and report her to the police, which could set off a whole chain reaction and may involve SS.

However, ask yourself if you would you report a woman who smoked. The answer is obviously no, because it's legal. Why is it different with cannabis? If you answer because it isn't legal it begs the question of why didn't you report her for smoking it before she became pregnant, when it was still illegal.

Which then leaves only one explanation: the clash of needs between mother and unborn child and how as a society we are encouraged to put the mother's needs lower than the unborn child's, despite the legal position to the contrary.

Don't get me wrong, I disapprove and will think less of anyone who does this. But until that child is born, the mother's right to do what she wants with her body is legally enshrined and should be respected. If you're going to report her, do it because you disapprove of cannabis full stop.

StarbugEnterprise Wed 14-Nov-12 16:43:36
WilsonFrickett Wed 14-Nov-12 17:07:23

she's not doing it because she's stressed. She's doing it because she's addicted. Hash is extremely addictive, as is nicotine. So she may not be able to just stop. She also may not want to. Or she actually may want to, but with an addiction and a smoking partner she may find it impossible to do without support. But the 'stressed' stuff is horseshit.

QueenofNightmares Wed 14-Nov-12 17:39:54

Starbug and Bumpstart

Not defending anyone in the interest of a balanced debate I'd like to point out Dr Melanie Dreher's medical study into the effects of marijuana on developing babies showing it caused no harm at any stage and it in fact improved the babies psychological stability. She studied both mother and babies over 10 years and is the only person to complete a study of its kind.

Sorry I find it all fascinating smile

LittleTyga Wed 14-Nov-12 17:48:55

I've known loads of people who smoked weed during their pregnancies - not tobacco - and their babies are all doing very well with no problems - How is her son? did she smoke through that pregnancy?

Is she smoking skunk or weed? With or without tobacco? I only can comment on weed as don't know anyone who smokes skunk.

LittleTyga Wed 14-Nov-12 17:50:33

Hash is completely different to weed - don't know much about hash either - what is she smoking?

TellyRotsYourBrain Wed 14-Nov-12 17:55:39

Little essentially when you cant take most normal drugs would hash or weed make a difference confused
You'd 'probably' be okay taking ibuprofen but its suggested to see the doc to check

If i were you id suggest she asks her GP what they think. some say to carry on smoking a small amount of tobacco as it would make you more stressed giving up. (apparently this is what my friend was advised)

If she doesn't want to, she knows she shouldn't be doing it.

firefliesinjune Wed 14-Nov-12 18:08:12

She does know the harm - she is actually a nurse. I agree its up to her what she does it is her choice - but I also feel that its not really fair on the baby - the baby doesnt have a choice does it?!

We have many mutual friends though only 1 knows she smokes weed. I might have a chat with that friend and see what they think. Maybe we could both have a chat with her in a round about way.

And it is quite strong weed. It is very smelly and green. Lots of crystals on it.

She said she smoked a bit when pregnant with her oldest child and he is ok. He has some behavioral issues but then again their house has had a lot of drama over the last few years I have known them, so not necessarily anything to do with weed.

Thanks for all replies.

Alisvolatpropiis Wed 14-Nov-12 18:11:01

I agree with Dahlen.

Cannabis is illegal. It was before her pregnancy. So if you didn't feel tempted to report her then why does her being pregnant make such a difference? Would you report her for smoking just tobacco? Probably not.

I deeply disapprove of what she is doing as well by the way.

valiumredhead Wed 14-Nov-12 18:12:57

Is cannabis illegal still? I thought you could have some as long as it was for personal use and not kilos of the stuff <old giffer>

scarlettsmummy2 Wed 14-Nov-12 18:18:30

Poor baby!! I would report to social services. She shouldn't be allowed to be a mum.

JoTheHot Wed 14-Nov-12 18:21:17

Could someone explain all the damnation and disapproval. I knew nothing about this 10 minutes ago, but can't find anything credible showing marijuana to be problematic to a foetus.

firefliesinjune Wed 14-Nov-12 18:25:40

Yes cannabis is still illegal!

And I dont have anything against it either. I didnt want to report her before as it was just herself she was intoxicating and thats up to her - she wasnt harming anyone else.

Now there is a little baby being intoxicated (possibly?) and that makes me concerned!

I really have no care what people do as long as it doesn't harm anyone else. I just keep thinking about her telling me about these pains she is getting etc and it makes me wonder if the smoking is causing it?!

She did see the midwife about pains and they said all seemed ok just "normal" pains but I doubt they know she smokes!

scarlettsmummy2 Wed 14-Nov-12 18:27:15

Why would anyone think it's a good idea for a child to grow up with parents who are stoned?? How can they look after their children properly if they are sitting getting stoned every night? It's bad enough to be doing that even when you aren't pregnant! And before anyone says that it is no different to alcohol, I don't think kids growing up with alcoholics is a good idea either!

firefliesinjune Wed 14-Nov-12 18:27:16

I dont know if it is damaging to baby - I guess it cant be great?

goralka Wed 14-Nov-12 18:31:36

Poor baby!! I would report to social services. She shouldn't be allowed to be a mum
fgs would you say the same about someone who was drinking a glass of wine?
get a grip.

OwlLady Wed 14-Nov-12 18:32:38

I can't find anything damning about it being used in pregnancy either confused

scarlettsmummy2 Wed 14-Nov-12 18:40:16

I would say exactly the same thing if someone was drinking every night! A one of glass of wine is fine, drinking every night not so! angry

whatsforyou Wed 14-Nov-12 18:40:37

Actually as a family support worker I would be concerned about a parent regularly using a mood altering substance and claiming it's because they're stressed. It would make no difference to me if it was alcohol, hash or whatever else they may fancy! If it is having an impact on their parenting then it is a concern. I have worked with 3 year olds who show all the signs of being stoned and who reek of stale hash smoke. I have also worked with children who haven't been fed breakfast or changed from the day before due to parents being hungover.
One isn't worse than the other, they are both unacceptable. And like I said before, although the unborn baby is a concern, I'd be more worried about the child already here.

MrsTwinks Wed 14-Nov-12 18:42:57

re: damage being done and all those quoting studies, it would depend on what she has, so studies might be useless. Alot of stuff is covered in so much chemical crap (I don't smoke, my folks are old time hippies and have told me this). So unless shes 100% certain of her source theres likely all sorts of chemical crap on there.

My mum smoked weed when she was pregnant with me and my brother, and while we seem ok we both do have alot of those minor medical issues (bad lungs, poor circulation, weak immune system etc) and I have some very wierd stuff (v specific so i dont want to meantion and out me) which I believe is because of her taking drugs. Cannabis in itself might be ok, but shes potentially also putting god knows what chemicals into her body so YANBU.

Also if shes using it because shes stressed etc IMO thats as bad as someone who "needs" a drink to de-stress and can't do without it. A self-medicator and addict. I mean dont get me wrong sometimes everyone can need a drink but its the not being able to stop.

LucieMay Wed 14-Nov-12 18:52:01

Do people find it any different to smoking tobacco throughout pregnancy and around children? Would people report that to social services? Would social services take any interest? I can't quite work out where I stand on this.

goralka Wed 14-Nov-12 18:53:35

Theres a difference between a parent who has a sneaky joint at night to someone who is puffing straight fags all day inc.in the car, isnt there?

OwlLady Wed 14-Nov-12 18:55:43

I doubt social services would do anything, they ignore families in crisis here, I can't see them getting over excited about a joint a night tbh

OwlLady Wed 14-Nov-12 18:57:26

actually the op has said a lot of weed not a sneaky/one joint, so it may make a difference. I don't know though. My mate has custody of her grandson who was born with FAS, but that was obvious iykwim

scarlettsmummy2 Wed 14-Nov-12 18:58:38

I think it is different to tobacco- it alters your mental state and therefore your parenting capabilities. It also sets a really bad example. I know I certainly wouldn't want my children around it.

ErikNorseman Wed 14-Nov-12 19:06:59

If you do report her, it will be end of the friendship. Undoulbably she will hate you for ever. If you report her the school then the school will inform social services. Social services may well take way her children if she and her partner makes no effort to stop smoking canabis. There is little doult that it will cause her "trouble"

That won't happen. Social services a) won't get involved unless her cannabis smoking impacts on her parenting to a dangerous degree (highly unlikely) and b) until the baby is born anyway. Never in the history of social services have children been removed just because their parents smoke cannabis.

Smoking cannabis is not really worse than smoking tobacco. Both are stupid and irresponsible while pregnant, but there are actually no grounds whatsoever to believe that cannabis is harmful to foetuses. I know it seems likely that it does, but no evidence has ever proven it.

scarlettsmummy2 Wed 14-Nov-12 19:11:29

I wouldn't actually worry about the friendship- I can't imagine ever being friends with someone like that to begin with. I would focus my concern on her two children growing up in a home with two stoners.

ErikNorseman Wed 14-Nov-12 19:34:23

My parents smoke cannabis. My mum has smoked daily for 40 years (probably while she was pg, I never asked)
I am a masters student, my brothers are all in management (bupa, restaurant and supermarket) and we are all very bright, well adjusted and had a great childhood. I'm not recommending it, I'm just saying that a mild addiction doesn't necessarily mean you are a poor parent.

Bumpstart Wed 14-Nov-12 19:44:09

I'm not impressed with either study quoted so far.

The Cleveland clinic website gives no details about the trail. The other one strikes me as partisan, and extremely small scale.

Has anyone got any other studies to quote on here, or do we go with Wikipedia, and agree that other that potential lower birth weight, there is no proven health implications for the unborn child?

Therefore tobacco and alcohol are not comparable vices.
Fwiw I do not approve of dope smoking parents. But if they are managing to hold a demanding job down, I would imagine they were pretty functional.

The concern I would have is whether or not she is seeking medical advice for the pain. If she is self medicating, or reluctant to seek advice because of her self medication, that is not a good sign.

DaveMccave Wed 14-Nov-12 19:48:24

Is she smoking it with tobacco? If she is, I'd try suggesting she smoke without first.

I used to be really disgustingly horrified about people that smoked it in pregnancy, but then I researched it was surprised to discover that there is no evidence that it harms the baby at all. It's much safer than drinking. The risks are with the tobacco, if she isn't smoking that then i'd stay out of it.

gimmecakeandcandy Wed 14-Nov-12 19:57:59

Yanbu at all and I too would report her to the social services - what a total, irresponsible twat. She doesn't deserve that baby, and she's a nurse too!

Bumpstart Wed 14-Nov-12 20:11:23

Scarlett. I wonder if you would really like to live in a country which didn't allow its citizens to have children on arbitrary lines.

I'm glad I don't.

AlienRefluxovermypoppy Wed 14-Nov-12 20:24:20

So, mrsmuddypuddles you think she would be better off on valium??!

That is a very highly addictive drug, physically, not just mentally, like cannabis.

social services? I think that's crazy, there is no proof to suggest it's harmful to a feotus. The low birth weight studies, could be as much to do with the tobacco as anything, would you ring social services on a woman smoking fags in pregnancy?

I would talk to her, as a friend, suggest she starts using a pipe, she will smoke a lot less, and no tobacco,this should help her cut down and eventually stop.

No, I'm not saying it's OK btw

scarlettsmummy2 Wed 14-Nov-12 20:32:08

I am a foster carer and have absolutely no time for irresponsible parents. I very much doubt that she is able to give her children the full attention they deserve if she is sitting doped up. It is illegal, it sends an appalling MSG to her son, it is addictive and it can lead to serious mental health problems. I don't care if that seems judgemental but I really don't approve.

JoTheHot Wed 14-Nov-12 20:36:22

There seem to be a depressing number of people on this thread, gaily throwing around insults like irresponsible twat, who can't be arsed to first verify whether their prejudices about dope and unborns withstand scrutiny.

DknyQueen Wed 14-Nov-12 20:36:45

Like someone up thread said, who knows what chemicals and other bad stuff she's inhaling. It's not just the weed!
In any event until her partner also quits the poor woman hasn't got a chance in hell of giving up. I think he's to blame too

scarlettsmummy2 Wed 14-Nov-12 20:39:35

I don't care if it is dangerous to the baby, it is dangerous because it causes the mother to be a poor parent. You simply can not parent properly if you are doing drugs every day. That is an addiction.

QueenofNightmares Wed 14-Nov-12 20:43:45

Marijuana is not addictive.

AlienRefluxovermypoppy Wed 14-Nov-12 20:46:30

scarlettesmummy You just don't know that. OP said she wasn't stoned all day, she holds down a job, and has a few joints at night, now I'm not saying that's alright, because she's pregnant, but smoking pot at night, when your kids are asleep, is safer,(imo) than drinking 3 glasses of wine, which half the country does every night, are they addicts and bad parents?

goralka Wed 14-Nov-12 20:46:40

I beg to differ queenofnightmares - OK you won't start curling up and shaking if you stop smoking but ask anyone why they keep smoking?

Alisvolatpropiis Wed 14-Nov-12 20:48:44

Cannabis is not physically addictive. That's not the same as saying its at all addictive queenofnightmares

Alisvolatpropiis Wed 14-Nov-12 20:49:18

*not at all.

QueenofNightmares Wed 14-Nov-12 21:14:18

"Research has shown the overall addiction potential for cannabis to be less than for caffeine,[42] tobacco, alcohol, cocaine or heroin, but slightly higher than that for psilocybin, mescaline, LSD.[43] There is some evidence that dependence on cannabis can exist in some heavy users."

I guess if you're looking at it like that then there is need to be concerned over the potential of getting addicted to caffeine considering its health implications and the problems too much caffeine intake can cause during pregnancy.

"Recent studies have focused on the effects of coffee intake during pregnancy. A large-scale Danish study polled more than 80,000 pregnant women regarding their coffee intake. This study found that women who drank large amounts of coffee during pregnancy were more likely to experience a miscarriage."

I'm obviously not looking to cause an argument here I just find a lot of these statements to not be thought out or researched and frankly slightly scaremongering in some cases. In my opinion it needs to be all things in moderation. Marijuana can help with certain pregnancy symptoms and doctors in Jamaica will recommend pregnant women smoke it to help with morning sickness symptoms as its far more important that a woman gets some nutrition than the possibility of it causing an issue which has never been proven in fact only the opposite has. Look up the studies of Dr Melanie Dreher she studied Jamaican women who were heavy smokers as in the article I linked to she did this because other studies used women who also smoked tobacco with the marijuana took other drugs or drank alcohol at the same time and so could give a clearer report on the negative effects of which none were found.

Alisvolatpropiis Wed 14-Nov-12 21:22:53

There has been a fair bit of scarmongering going on. I often reflect on the fact that cannabis actually has for more medical benefits,going by studies,than the "legal" drugs seen as acceptable to use. Tobacco and alcohol.

I don't think that the woman should smoke weed whilst pregnant. But I don't think that it automatically makes her a dead cert bloody awful parent who should be reported to the social services either.

ErikNorseman Wed 14-Nov-12 21:40:14

Scarlettsmummy that is simply not true. A surprisingly huge number of people parent extremely well whilst also being regular cannabis smokers. It does not definitively cause poor parenting.

LittleTyga Wed 14-Nov-12 21:48:19

Does anyone know why Cannabis is illegal?

Nothing whatsoever to do with the effect it has on people - everything to do with cotton growers in America -

Hemp growers were in direct competition to them and being the more powerful, the cotton growers set out to discredit Hemp by spreading untruths about how it drives people crazy - now because its illegal unlike tobacco, alcohol or caffeine - we can't test it without special permission - when test are done on it it usually reveals how marvellous this weed actually is with many amazing health properties - it can help with nausea during chemo, its a pain relief, drunk like tea it can help the symptoms of flu - It's pretty amazing stuff and if it was legalised we would be a healthier nation because of it!

valiumredhead Wed 14-Nov-12 21:49:31

I would disagree it has nothing to do with the effect on people. Phsychosis?

goralka Wed 14-Nov-12 21:51:08

cannabis does not induce psychosis.

LittleTyga Wed 14-Nov-12 21:51:17

But that is because it is grown illegally and to make it grow quicker it is pumped with all sorts - if it was left to grow in the sun as a natural herb we wouldn't have all these problems with skunk and our young people.

goralka Wed 14-Nov-12 21:51:40

in 'normal' adult brains.

AlienRefluxovermypoppy Wed 14-Nov-12 21:53:15

Yes, OP tell her to bake it in cakes.

valiumredhead Wed 14-Nov-12 21:56:01

What makes you say that gorika?

valiumredhead Wed 14-Nov-12 21:58:55
LittleTyga Wed 14-Nov-12 22:22:19

Quick Google Prof Nutt's opinion

Until it's legalised so proper tests are carried out there will always be different opinions on this. Although I think The Priory would say that wouldn't they - but Professor Nutt has no agenda!

LittleTyga Wed 14-Nov-12 22:24:43

The conclusion......

The other paradox is that schizophrenia seems to be disappearing (from the general population) even though cannabis use has increased markedly in the last 30 years. When we were reviewing the general practice research database in the UK from the University of Keele, research consistently and clearly showed that psychosis and schizophrenia are still on the decline. So, even though skunk has been around now for 10 years, there has been no upswing in schizophrenia. In fact, where people have looked, they haven't found any evidence linking cannabis use in a population and schizophrenia.

Yes it can cause psychosis, so can heavy drinking. Cannabis can increase the levels of dopamine in the brain which can trigger psychosis

You don't have to be schizophrenic to suffer with psychosis

LittleTyga Wed 14-Nov-12 22:34:20

No but The Professor is linking the two because schizophrenia is a psychotic experience.

ImagineJL Wed 14-Nov-12 22:44:01

I would tell her midwife, and ask her not to let on how she knew.

If all my mates who had smoked cannabis when they were pregnant in the 70s and 80's had been locked up, then that would include lawyers, doctors, teachers, civil servants, IT consultants, ......

Some of them are grandparents now and most are very senior in their professions. None of them have mental health problems or ever came to the attention of SS or child protection services. There was no need. They weren't addicted, none ever had to go into rehab, none of them could remotely be described as "dysfunctional families". They don't smoke anything nowadays. Their kids have all gone to university or are holding down good jobs and are in stable relationships.

Of COURSE in an ideal world you shouldn't take drink alcohol or drugs or eat certain foods or get stressed or indulge in ANY risk taking behaviour when you are pregnant. But the sort of misinformation being promulgated here is completely unhelpful.

There is No evidence that the widespread use of cannabis 30-40 odd years ago contributed to an epidemic of birth defects or problems in later life. There is plenty of evidence that other co-morbid factors such as , alcoholism, tobacco use, neglect etc will have negative effects on children.

gimmecakeandcandy Wed 14-Nov-12 23:11:23

Oh get off your high horse jothehot I have more experience and knowledge of cannabis than you'll ever know or have. Yes, she is an irresponsible twat and I am not going to be a bleeding liberal and say we should 'understand' her or pat her hand. It is wrong on so many levels what she is doing.

JoTheHot Thu 15-Nov-12 07:38:51

Perhaps you could help me down from my high horse by sharing the science showing marijuana itself is harmful to an unborn.

PearlyWhites Thu 15-Nov-12 08:00:21

No yanbu she is very selfish but I wouldn't report her it would only cause her and ultimately her unborn baby and other child more stress.
I am shocked and saddened at the number of posters who think that an adult women's rights/ needs are more important than a baby just because is yet to take a breath.

valiumredhead Thu 15-Nov-12 08:04:22

http://ncpic.org.au/ncpic/publications/factsheets/article/cannabis-use-and-reproduction

I have been goggling and haven't found anything yet that says it doesn't harm the baby.

Mylittlepuds Thu 15-Nov-12 08:14:31

Ok so this is clearly, clearly not ideal.

However she says she is stressed - too stressed to stop. So stressed she is prepared to take risks with her baby.

A lot of people think of stress as normal stress that everyone suffers time to time. However real stress is absolutely debilitating. She may suffer real mental health problems such as anxiety disorder like GAD, where it's hard to actually function. You couldn't possibly understand unless you have it.

If this is the case (I may be barking up the wrong tree here) but doctors wouldn't hesitate to prescribe ADs - the effects of which on an unborn baby aren't really known. There is certainly a lot of anecdotal evidence with women saying 'my baby was fine' but risks include the baby withdrawing after birth and getting 'jitters' for days after birth.

Despite this ADs would be prescribed as this kind of unrelenting stress can be even more damaging to the unborn baby - miscarriage is a possible association (although not catergorically proven) and low birth rate.

Perhaps she has offset the risks of cannabis and is self
medicating? Pregnancy can greatly exasperate an anxiety disorder.

Just a thought.

Mylittlepuds Thu 15-Nov-12 08:15:38

* low birth weight

valiumredhead Thu 15-Nov-12 08:16:44

Some AD's are ok in pregnancy iirc.

The low birth weight for users would surely be linked to the smoking element no?

Mylittlepuds Thu 15-Nov-12 08:21:26

'some ADs are okay in pregnancy'. Um where is the evidence for this? That no risk at all is posed?

LoopsInHoops Thu 15-Nov-12 08:25:48

My my, what a lot of pearl clutching on this thread!

1. It is her body, her baby, her lungs
2. Social services would not care, not should they unless there is any indication that she is actually parenting badly
3. From experience (my mother was an alcoholic and smoked weed when pregnant/when we were little), the people you should be getting all het up about are the drinkers. Do you call social services of the midwife hmm for them?

goralka Thu 15-Nov-12 08:26:59

no loops 'wine o'clock' is just amusing mum stuff.....

valiumredhead Thu 15-Nov-12 08:29:42

Not that no risk at all but better on balance for the mother to continue to take them. Some are better than others. Sorry, didn't phrase that well.

Loops I agree, it's ultimately her choice.

hellsbells76 Thu 15-Nov-12 08:36:03

Foetuses don't get addicted to nicotine FFS, it's not heroin. Look, it's not ideal but it's also not any of your business. Fortunately we're not in the US and women can do what the hell they like with their bodies, pregnant or not. While some may make daft choices, I'd rather that than anyone having the authority to police what they do on the grounds that they're nothing but a walking womb and lost all their autonomy the minute the sperm met the egg.

valiumredhead Thu 15-Nov-12 08:38:32

No they don't hells - but smoking does cause low birth weight.

hellsbells76 Thu 15-Nov-12 08:42:14

I'm aware of that, and presumably so is she. It's still her body so her choice.

valiumredhead Thu 15-Nov-12 08:43:01

I agree 100%.

bellabreeze Thu 15-Nov-12 08:43:36

Yabu, if you researched this or knew how it worked you'd see it isn't dangerous for the baby

LoopsInHoops Thu 15-Nov-12 08:44:28

And would you think of phoning SS if you knew she smoked cigarettes?

bellabreeze Thu 15-Nov-12 08:44:33

In fact smoking it isn't illegal but possesion and selling are

bellabreeze Thu 15-Nov-12 08:45:57

The low birth weight is because of TOBACCO not cannabis!

valiumredhead Thu 15-Nov-12 08:53:34

Yes bella that is what I said confused

EmmelineGoulden Thu 15-Nov-12 08:56:48

If you concern is about harm to the foetus (rather than concern that someone who's stoned every night isn't being an adequate parent to her current child) and you don't think she will stop taking canabis, then see if you can persuade her to change to eating it. The known bad effects of canabis when pregnant are due to smoking, especially when mixed with tobacco.

bellabreeze Thu 15-Nov-12 09:04:47

the stress of stopping smoking tobacco wouldn't be worth it
And ok valium x-post

firefliesinjune Thu 15-Nov-12 11:02:17

Thanks for all the replies.

As I said before I have nothing against smoking. I just worry for the baby. Its her personal choice to smoke - I get that. As bad as I may find it.

I know she has been on ADs before and she finds the weed is the only thing that "helps" her.

I dont think I will report her to anyone I dont want to make life hell for them and I suspect it may make life very difficult if I do tell someone.

I will however try and get her out of the house a bit and see if I can offer her the extra support she needs.

Shagmundfreud Thu 15-Nov-12 11:15:34

"if you researched this or knew how it worked you'd see it isn't dangerous for the baby"

I spent five minutes googling this and instantly came up with a raft of studies suggesting that cannabis consumption in pregnancy may impact on a child's cognitive development, and on levels of hyperactivity.

Still - if I wouldn't say anything to a pregnant smoker of tobacco (I wouldn't), I also don't think I'd say anything to a pregnant smoker of cannabis. Can't see that one is significantly worse that the other.

Mylittlepuds Thu 15-Nov-12 12:14:18

If she was on ADs before then there you have your answer as to why. She's found something that can help control her stress. Arguably safer than ADs in pregnancy? Don't judge unless you've been in that situation.

ilovetermtime Thu 15-Nov-12 13:12:24

Haven't read the whole thread but just wanted to chip in with my experience, or rather my friend's! She smoked some cannabis throuout her pregnancy... but did loads of research on the topic first and then asked the midwife what she thought! The midwife said that if it was helping with her stress levels then a little bit in the evenings wouldn't hurt, or at least not as much as giving up.

Not everyone who smokes weed is an addict either, there is a big difference between USING a drug and ABUSING a drug (sorry if anyone's pointed this out already).

AlienRefluxovermypoppy Thu 15-Nov-12 14:56:59

I did lovetermtime but you put it very well grin

ilovetermtime Thu 15-Nov-12 17:32:28

Thank you alien!

Bumpstart Thu 15-Nov-12 18:19:44

Valium redhead. Thanks for linking. It is another fact sheet with no references, from a partisan organisation.

I think people are clutching their pearls about the idea of drug addict mums. They think that all drugs are addictive in the same way. They do not realise that a junkie steals from their family to get a fix because they physically need the drugs, where as a cannabis addict has got more mental resources to put into finding some weed because it is a psychological rather than a physical need.

I'm sure some posters who are so damning of a pot smoking parent whose parenting skills are not being questioned could look at their own behaviour and realise that there are habits they have which others may consider damnable. Like plonking the kids in front of the tv so they can have a quiet half hour on mumsnet.

Jomato Thu 15-Nov-12 19:11:07

I haven't research the impact on cannabis use of foetal development. I do know that as a social worker I recently had a midwife ask me whether a mother had been using cannabis as baby was showing mild signs of withdrawal (particularly high pitched cry). She told me she had known babies show similar symptoms from caffeine withdrawal. It might be worth talking to your friend about it and suggesting she discuss with her midwife.

ilovetermtime Thu 15-Nov-12 20:05:22

Can you have signs of withdrawal from something that isn't physically addictive? Would it not be from withdrawal of the tobacco it's smoked (usually) with? Or maybe it was a caffeine withdrawal cry, as presumeably it's much more likely that the mother drank a lot of coffee during the pregnancy rather than smoked a lot of cannabis? Seems a strange assumption to jump to IMO.

Jomato Thu 15-Nov-12 22:42:35

She assumed cannabis because it was incorrectly mentioned in the notes. It may just have been one midwife with misguided ideas about withdrawal or it may be something that is being seen on a regular basis without research evidence to back up, difficult to say but would be interested if any midwives on here had any insight.

ilovetermtime Fri 16-Nov-12 06:12:59

I wonder if there's been any proper research done on this? It seems like all the research is focused on alcohol and yet there are a lot of cannabis smokers out there with no clear guidelines. I guess that's the problem when no one wants to talk about it because it's illegal, iyswim .

PeshwariNaan Fri 16-Nov-12 06:39:25

Having smoked in the past myself a lot, my concern would be twofold: there aren't enough studies on it, and surely smoking anything affects the mother's oxygen intake? I know when I smoked in the past (sans tobacco), I developed quite a cough. Even if you smoke once a day and use a water pipe, it's hard on your lungs IMO.

That said, I'm not drinking while pregnant, and people have jumped all over me on these boards for that choice. I don't think there's anything wrong with a bit of caution especially given I can't even take my normal allergy meds or nasal spray.

Anyway OP, I'm not sure what you should do. I'd encourage her to think about other options for her anxiety, but if she's been on ADs before and they haven't worked, maybe there's not a solution. (Anyway, ADs in pregnancy are themselves under-studied.) Surely if she's a nurse herself she knows the drill?

LittleTyga Fri 16-Nov-12 15:17:01

I wonder if there's been any proper research done on this?

ilovetermtime That's the problem - because it's illegal a special licence is needed iirc to do research - so not much done - what has been done usually learns about the amazing qualities it does have!

ilovetermtime Fri 16-Nov-12 16:38:48

Ha! We do have a very ostrich-like approach to some things in this country don't we?

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