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Moms on Mushrooms – A Look at Parenting and Psychedelic Use 

moms mushrooms
Written by Alexandra Hicks

Parenting is hard work, and moms deserve the right to self-medicate with the substance of their choosing (so long as it’s safe and doesn’t interfere with their ability to take care of their children)… enter, Moms on Mushrooms.

Across the US (and other parts of the world, moms are turning to psychedelics to help them deal with the stresses of parenting. It’s honestly a beautiful thing, women coming together and using natural products to help them overcome mental blockages and connect with their children better. But on some levels, it indicates a deeper problem… a lack of professional and societal support for women, and parents in general.  

Parenting on psychedelics 

Just to clarify, we’re not talking about parenting while a person is actively tripping on psychedelics, that would be close to impossible – but rather, parenting while microdosing, or parents taking a psychedelic trip on occasion to regroup and regain some clarity and focus.  

Parenting is fulling, yes, but it’s also incredibly stressful and demanding. And it’s a topic that can be difficult to discuss openly with others, because parents who come forward with their feelings of frustration and burnout are often stigmatized and met with various judgements. For some reason, society expects parents, mothers especially, to be happy and positive at all times. Stress, anxiety, self-doubt, and overwhelmingness are often viewed as reflections of inadequacy; making it challenging for parents to reach out for help.  

I’m a working mom of two boys, and I know these feelings all too well. Sometimes, a little bit of self-medicating really goes a long way in making you feel reset, recharged, and ready to take on the world. I’m personally not a fan of microdosing, as low doses often result in anxious highs for me. However, a solid psychedelic trip a couple times a year is great for getting back to a more positive baseline.  

For example, research has shown that even one instance of psychedelic use can be enough to rewire the brain for the better. Taking DMT, LSD, or using a higher dose of psilocybin just once is enough to help neurons in the brain sprout new dendrites, which can foster greater connections between different parts of the brain and it helps people let go of long-held mental and behavioral patterns. This is helpful for people struggling with depression, drug addiction, PTSD, or parental burnout.  

The M.O.M Mission 

The inspiration for this article stemmed from both my own personal experiences with psychedelics, and a group I met with at a recent industry conference. The group is known as Moms on Mushrooms, and it’s a private community-based platform that focuses on advocacy and education to spread the word about the healing powers of entheogenic plants, and building connections between mothers.  

The group was started by Tracey Tee, a mom of one living in Denver, Colorado; and the mission is clear: De-stigmatize psychedelics, especially for moms. “We can’t move forward in healing and raising our consciousness if we’re smothered in fear, guilt, shame and old programming around the use of psychedelics or the act of self-healing,” says Tracey. “Speaking out and standing up for this journey is our #1 mission.” 

The group aims to promote safe, intentional, and spiritual use of psychedelics by means of education and conservation. They encourage women to use these sacred plants as an “ally and guide”, rather than a “quick fix, magic bullet or crutch.” And yes, the group is designed to be a safe space exclusively for women.  

“The simplest form of reciprocity is to be of service,” says Tracey. “This means giving back inside our community and giving back to those who have worked for years underground to lay the foundation for M.O.M. to even exist.  Respect is critical, as this is slow medicine which brings us back to the Mother Earth, to God and Source, and to each other. We have a responsibility to humbly honor this practice and those who teach it, those who mindfully cultivate it, to Great Mother Earth who provides it, and to the Divine healing that comes from it.” 

Illegal activities for the greater good 

As helpful as these drugs are, they are still federally illegal. A handful of states and cities have legalized or decriminalized certain hallucinogens (mainly psilocybin and MDMA), but in most of the US, if you get caught with any of these drugs, you will face legal ramifications.  

That’s bad enough for anyone, but even scarier for a parent. When you do something illegal as a parent, you run the risk of having your children taken away and placed into foster care. It happened to Jessica Thornton, an Indiana resident, mom of five, and neonatal intensive care nurse who turned to microdosing psilocybin to alleviate her depression after years of unsuccessful treatments with pharmaceutical antidepressants.  

When someone she knew got wind of her unconventional method of dealing with her mental health, they reported her to local authorities and she was faced with the possibility of losing her children and getting locked away in prison for 10 years. “The cops busted my door down, and all pointed their guns at me, you would have thought I had committed a murder,” reflects Thornton, who was charged with two felonies — dealing a scheduled substance and child endangerment. She was charged with dealing because she was growing over one ounce of shrooms, but anyone who has ever grown mushrooms knows you typically get more than that out of a single flush, so that’s a ridiculous way to charge people, but I digress.  

Thankfully, Jessica’s case was resolved in October of last year with 18 months of probation and 180 days of house arrest (not sure what happened with her custody situation). But honestly, ANY sentence is too much for a person who was simply treating their mental health disorder with the medication that works best for them. She’s lucky she didn’t get 10 years in prison, but she went through an incredibly stressful and degrading ordeal, and now, is probably terrified to continue growing mushrooms… the only product that offered her relief from years of depression.  

Why on Earth should a person living in modern-day, woke America have to fear that a gestapo-style police force will bust down their door and drag them off to prison for doing something that not only is safe and victimless, but also legal (or at the very least, less harshly criminalized) when you cross an imaginary line to the north or west? The only way to truly make changes is by making noise – defying authority, joining organizations like Moms on Mushrooms, and working with activists and politicians in your state.

Final thoughts

Moms on Mushrooms has an important message, moms are people too, and we need access to safe and effective treatment options just like everyone else. When it comes to dealing with mental health issues, nothing really beats the efficacy and safety profile of psychedelics, especially considering the low rate of overdose or addiction with this class of drugs.

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About the author

Alexandra Hicks

Managing editor at Cannadelics and U.S based journalist, helping spread the word about the many benefits of using cannabis and psychedelics.