I’m mum-shamed by trolls for smoking weed and my firstborn was underweight but otherwise I feel sick | The Sun

A YOUNG mum has hit back at trolls who criticise her for smoking marijuana while pregnant.

Clarissa Morales, 21, has defended her controversial decision to smoke through both of her pregnancies, claiming it is keeping her and her unborn baby alive despite there being many dangers.

The full-time mum explained she was prescribed medicinal cannabis by her healthcare provider before falling pregnant to treat her mental health problems and pain from an existing back fracture.

Clarissa revealed she stopped smoking for three weeks with her first child, now 13 months old, but soon started again as she claims it was the only thing keeping her nausea at bay.

The mum, who lives in New Jersey, USA, explained: "I was initially prescribed prior to pregnancy for my mental health and my back fracture pain.

"I used it and I was like, 'Wow, my head's like finally clear for the first time and my back isn't killing me anymore!'


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"I initially stopped with my first pregnancy. I stopped for around three weeks. But my mental health soon deteriorated – it got really bad.

"With my morning sickness, I was throwing up all the time and it included blood. I was tearing up my oesophagus. Cannabis was the only thing that kept the nausea at bay.

"I also looked at various studies like neurodevelopmental outcomes after prenatal marijuana exposure.

"I tried every other method possible to treat my ailments, but none of them worked."

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Doctors have warned against the serious health risks smoking cannabis while pregnant can causeCredit: Caters

Risks of smoking cannabis during pregnancy

The NHS states smoking cannabis during a pregnancy can be harmful to the baby's health.

  • Chemicals found in cannabis (in particular, tetrahydrocannabinol or THC) pass through your system, and can harm your baby’s development.
  • Breathing in second-hand cannabis smoke can also be risky for your baby. The smoke has many of the same chemicals as tobacco smoke, avoiding these may decrease the chances for developmental problems in your baby.
  • Cannabis use during pregnancy affects the baby’s developing brain and nervous system. It may increase your child’s risk of developing autism, making it hard for your child to pay attention or learn. These issues may only become noticeable as your child grows older.
  • Women who do not use cannabis while pregnant are less likely to deliver prematurely and less likely to have babies with low birth weights.
  • Pregnant women who do not use cannabis have a lesser risk of stillbirth.

Clarissa attempted to use alternatives like edibles (food products infused with marijuana), before smoking again during her firs pregnancy.

But she also suffered from severe nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, hyperemesis gravidarum (HG), and this meant she could only consume cannabis by smoking, which she found also worked to keep the 'nausea at bay'.

Now 32-weeks into her second pregnancy, the mum has come out to defend her choice which has sparked a massive backlash online.

She's even had TikTok pages taken down for discussing the topic of smoking while pregnant as it is against community guidelines.

Defending her decision to smoke, she said: "I didn't want to lose my baby.

"I had to think about what method was going to work best and fastest. I had to really weigh the risk versus reward benefit, and there was more reward than anything."

Clarissa told Caters News that although, in an ideal world, she wouldn't smoke while pregnant, she claims she had carried out research into the subject and believes that the benefits in treating her existing ailments and morning sickness ultimately outweigh the risks.

When Clarissa decided to smoke marijuana while pregnant, she kept her usage to a minimum.

She explained that she had previously suffered from miscarriages and was prepared to do whatever it took to bring her daughter into the world as she had never kept a pregnancy for so long.

Referring to her first child, Clarissa said: "I didn't want to lose my baby.

"I had to think about what method was going to work best and fastest. I had to really weigh the risk versus reward benefit, and there was more reward than anything.

"It's not something that I enjoy doing, but what's the other option, I'm throwing up in a hospital?

"I like to refer to it as plant medicine because that's what it is. It's something that I take to help my ailments.

"It's very stigmatised. I've lost countless TikTok accounts for just talking about it. People put medicinal users along with recreational users, which is very frustrating because I'm not doing it for fun."

Clarissa explained that her current pregnancy is going well and her baby is progressing as expected.

She said: "My baby is growing. They are measuring on time, and the anatomy scan went great."

When asked if her marijuana usage affected her daughter, she explained that while she was born at a low birth weight, she claims her severe morning sickness was responsible.

Clarissa said: "She was born weighing five pounds 10 ounces at 42 weeks gestation, so she was small.

"Doctors attributed that to the fact that I dropped like 60 pounds when I was pregnant. But she was completely healthy.

"Now she's 13 months old, she's actually advanced for her age. She's been crawling since she was four months old, and she properly started walking at 10 months."

Clarissa is hoping that by sharing her story, she can explain her decision-making.

Dr Alexis Missick of UK Meds said: "During pregnancy or while breastfeeding, no level of cannabis use is known to be safe.

"Developmental disruption of a foetus has been associated with maternal marijuana usage in many published studies into marijuana exposure during pregnancy.

"Clinical evidence highlights that cannabis usage amongst pregnant and lactating people is linked to side effects such as childhood developmental deficits and lower birth weights, as well as a smaller head circumference, a smaller size for gestational age and other birth defects.

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"There could also be a greater risk of spontaneous preterm birth in mothers who smoke cannabis during pregnancy and a higher risk of neonatal intensive care admissions.

"Pregnant women shouldn't make the assumption that it is safe to smoke cannabis during pregnancy until more information is available."

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