This week, Jenée Desmond-Harris and Lauren Williams discuss a Prudie letter: “Lost in the Weeds.”
Lauren Williams: There’s a lot going on with this one. But your first piece of advice, to ask an attorney, is a good one—I think that if everything they are doing is legal, and they aren’t doing it in front of the kid, and the only cannabis they may ever see is the actual plant, there’s not much the ex can do to her.
Jenée Desmond-Harris: I agree, but I also know exes can do things that aren’t based on illegality, but are just asshole-ish. So, in the same way that if she had a glass of wine, her ex could be like “Your mom is an alcoholic,” he could make this a thing.
I wonder why she thinks their kid would even tell the ex, given that the ex seems like kind of an ass about these things.
Jenée: But as soon as I thought of that, I thought no, I don’t want her to live in fear of that type of reaction! I definitely wondered about whether to just tell her to tell the kid to keep it a secret.
Lauren: Yeah … I think it’s bad news to tell the kid to keep something like this a secret. Especially if the kid then decides to tell. It makes it seem like there really is something wrong with it. But one of the things the LW kind of casually throws in there is that their CURRENT spouse seems absolutely unwilling to compromise on his cannabis growing, even if it spares the LW and kid a lot of drama and heartache. It seems like the LW is stuck between two very uncompromising people, and they are left with the burden of trying to keep what is clearly a touchy co-parenting situation afloat.
Jenée: That’s so true—this is really her current spouse’s thing, not hers. I didn’t really pick up on that. And it actually makes this harder and more complicated.
Lauren: Everything I know about co-parenting when the exes don’t like each other is that you really don’t want cannabis-type wrenches thrown in there, even if you DO have the moral and legal high ground.
Jenée: And it sucks that her current spouse doesn’t seem to care about the drama this could cause for her and her kid. Especially because it’s not as if this is about his use of medical marijuana … it’s a total hobby … nobody needs to grow cannabis. Go to the dispensary!
Lauren: Right! The LW seems to see it as simply a way to save money and does not appear to have any connection to their homegrown cannabis. As an important aside, I have recently become a home gardener.
Jenée: Wait what kind of home gardener?
Lauren: To date I’ve grown a gorgeous butternut squash (and some other less successful things we will not mention). I would give my butternut squash up in a second in this situation!
Jenée: So now you’ve changed my mind. I want her to talk to her current spouse about dropping this whole thing and making her life easier. I don’t actually think it has to be a slippery slope situation; nobody is going to ask him to only buy organic produce to keep the ex happy or anything. It’s just this one thing that is still super touchy even if it’s legal.
Lauren: I wonder how they’re growing it—in pots or in the ground. Because maybe they could move it to a friend or neighbor’s house. I’m not sure how the kid hasn’t seen it?
Jenée: I’m imagining it in a walk-in closet under some lights, but I completely made that up.
Lauren: Oh, see I literally ONLY know how to grow butternut squash.
Lauren: I think especially because the ask isn’t that they need to quit weed—it’s just that they need to hold off on growing it for a while to get through their kid being in a weird transitional age that will give the ex more ammo to be dramatic—it makes sense to make the sacrifice … NOT to appease the ex, but for the LW’s emotional health.
Jenée: Yes, that’s exactly it. It’s not totally fair, and it sucks that the ex kind of gets to win, but …. divorce is hard, and he knew that when he married someone who was divorced, so hopefully he didn’t think it wouldn’t affect his life AT ALL.
Lauren: And the ex doesn’t even know he’s winning! So it’s not really a feather in his cap or anything. What would be really bad would be telling the kid, the ex finding out, and then having to give it all up because of the ex’s tantrum. This way, it’s your choice. And you’re making it for yourself, not that asshole you had a kid with.
Jenée: Yep. Now let’s just hope the current spouse isn’t equally asshole-ish. Fingers crossed.
Lauren: I know … because I’m getting vibes. I wish them good luck. This is a very frustrating situation.
Jenée: Same. Let us know what happens and if our vibes were off, LW.