Keep ex’s medical marijuana away from kids

My ex had cancer years ago and used a lot of medical marijuana. One of the reasons for our divorce was his carelessness with the marijuana around our children – food items on the counters near their snacks, etc. We had some very scary near misses. I heard last week that his cancer has returned. I feel terrible for him, but I’m also incredibly nervous that his past habits will return. He has remarried with two young children. And he has our teenage daughters every other weekend.

I’m afraid our girls are of the age that will encourage easy access to experimentation. I’m also worried about their younger brothers. I don’t know how to go about this without looking like a horrible person. What are my options?

One option is to seek a change in your children’s parenting time until your ex is well again. However, that does not go down well with your ex, your children or the judge, regardless of your good intentions. There are better options to try first.

You need to have a very honest conversation with your teenage daughters. It would be best if you and your ex could get on the same page and have the conversation together. Sit down and explain that he is sick and that medical marijuana sometimes helps with this kind of illness. Explain that just because he’s using it, it’s NOT OK for them to try it, even if it’s out in the open or they find it. Tell them that any experiment they want to do could harm their father because he wouldn’t have what he needs when he needs it. Putting it that way gives them something serious to think about when they’re tempted. Also explain the dangers to their developing brains if they take his medication.

Have a conversation with his wife. Don’t point the finger at him, but rather warn her that last time he was so sick that he wasn’t always able to clean himself up and your kids found his edibles nearby. That way, it sounds like all you’re concerned about is her kids and that she knows she needs to keep an eye on them.

Also explain to your girls that while marijuana would be bad for them, it would be very bad for their younger brothers, so it would be good if they could be extra helpful with their brothers while their father is sick.

With any luck, you can all work together and be the support team your ex needs right now. But if you tend to think the “right” way to do this doesn’t work, you can always ask the court to intervene – then at least you can say it was your last resort.

Email inquiries to whkey@brickjones.com

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