Love & Money is a MarketWatch series looking at how our relationship with money and consumerism impacts our relationships with significant others, friends and family.
Parenting has its highs.
But it also has its lows. And for that, some parents are turning to cannabidiol, or CBD, a marijuana extract that users say helps curb anxiety and induce relaxation — without the high of smoking pot.
Take stay-at-home mom of two Jo Highland, who says that CBD helps her manage parenting stress and more calmly juggle responsibilities. “I have a husband who has a high-demand job with long hours and travel, so I am the one taking the kids to and from school, to gymnastics, to swimming,” the 38-year-old Ohio resident tells MarketWatch. “On a day I know it’s going to be high stress, I say, ‘Let me grab a [CBD-infused] seltzer.’ ”
Highland says she opts for CBD (her go-to brand is Queen City) rather than antianxiety medicine because it “doesn’t impair my ability to take care of my kids” but still “makes me feel really calm and takes my anxiety from a 10 to a 4.”
She’s part of a growing number of consumers taking CBD. While U.S. retail sales of cannabidiol were just $108 million in 2014, they grew to more than $512 million in 2018 and are expected to hit $1.15 billion in 2020, according to data from Statista. And younger people are often the main consumers: A report by Eaze, a cannabis delivery company, found that the average age of a CBD consumer was 31. With many millennials forming families — more than a million millennials become moms each year, according to the Pew Research Center — it’s not surprising some are turning to CBD.
Marc Lewis, a 33-year-old digital marketing professional who lives in Raleigh, N.C., with two young children, ages 3 and 1½, is another one. “A dropper of CBD makes this dad more patient,” he tells MarketWatch. “It’s like the kids scream less and those tiny hands aren’t so sticky.”
Lewis takes it a few times a week (his go-to brands are Green Roads, Rosebud and Lazarus) to take “the edge off after a long day so I can lay on the floor and be a present father.” Rather than being frustrated by the kids taking the toys from their baskets and dumping them all over the floor — which on a non-CBD night “puts a shiver through my spine,” he jokes — he looks at the mess and just thinks, “Well, it’s gonna happen, it’s fine.” And while dining in restaurants with the kids used to fill him with dread — “I’m wondering, Will we make it through dinner? Will the kids eat their food?” — with CBD,…