Growing Up Green: Interviews with Children of Pot Growers
The controversy over marijuana extends into the family life of the grower. Are the children safe? Do they grow up drug addicted menaces to society? Are they traumatized by what they go through? I recently did an article on this for Grow magazine and the piece just came out (though I haven’t yet been able to buy it locally.) I talked with forty year old women who had pot growing parents. I spoke with three year old girls who excitedly explained how to tell when the cannabis flower is ready to harvest.
“They get bigger and bigger and then they get purple,” she explained seriously, her large eyes widening and her curls bouncing as she sat on her dad’s lap holding a handful of this year’s crop.
I interviewed older men who grew up in Humboldt and younger ones now raising children here in the business. There are good memories told and bad. There is one of each below the fold. And more in the magazine.
The sweet memories outweigh the bad for most of the offspring–
Family bonds, as well as community ties, can benefit from the cannabis relationship. Growers often have a sense of being inside a warm house while outside a storm rages—they have a feeling of working together against the outside world. … Megan, Anya’s mom, whose parents also grew, remembers the times she came home from school and “the girls,” as she calls the women who came to manicure the pot, were upstairs working with her mother. “[All the clippers] asked me questions about boyfriends and my day at school. I’d snuggle on the bed and they’d start talking….” She smiles with remembered pleasure. “I heard a lot of laughter. It was a fun feeling” Then her smile widens to a wicked grin. “They always had the good snacks. Things we weren’t usually allowed to have, like chocolate.” Thus, marijuana in general and harvest especially comes to be closely associated with treats and festivities and a sense of community.
but the harsher ones (which apparently happened only rarely) are the ones we all can’t put out of our mind–they may have ended well but the possibilities are difficult for societies less tied to the Wild West mentality to assimilate—
Tom remembers clearly his dad shouting that a mini van had just dropped two guys off at what the family labeled “Rip-off corner.” “Hurry, get here right away,” he demanded. Within a few minutes, Tom and his dad were following the tracks of the would-be thieves towards their “patch.” In fact, according to Tom, “the whole community mobilized.” Some of the neighborhood put up a roadblock in order to keep the driver from returning for the two thieves. Others joined the chase on foot.
Soon the thieves were “pinned down [behind some bushes]…with people all around. So we started having fun with them—verbal torture…” The two terrified robbers cowered behind whatever cover they could find while the community men folk described (falsely) how they had already killed the driver of the escape vehicle and were going to kill them. Coincidentally, though, a drunken neighbor had driven over a cliff the same night and much to everyone’s dismay, a tow truck and a highway patrol car made their way up the dead-end road. The roadblock hurriedly dissolved. And, as soon as it was safe, warning shots were fired at the “rip-offs” and they were allowed to escape.