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'Pot Parties' Grow In Popularity As Stigma Surrounding Marijuana Fades In California

Now that marijuana is legal in California, a growing number of women are trying it for the first time.

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Peter Daut
, CBS Los Angeles
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CALIF. — Now that marijuana is legal in California, a growing number of women are trying it for the first time.

Many of them are doing it together in the safety and comfort of their own homes.

Anita Boras is one of several women who gathered at a home in West Hollywood for a "pot party." There's plenty of food. And as you'd expect - plenty of marijuana.

Bud, edibles, patches, beauty products are abound. Here, attendees say they can sample and ask questions without having to visit a dispensary.

Boras says she's only smoked pot a few times in her life so she came to the party to find out what else cannabis offers.

"You get to learn, you get to try new products and you get to be in a place where you're not embarrassed or uncomfortable to talk about things," Boras told KCBS-TV's Peter Daut.

As the stigma of marijuana fades in states like California, where the drug is now legal for adults, recent surveys show that women are among the fastest-growing segment of cannabis consumers. And they're using it to treat a wide-range of symptoms, including anxiety, PMS and nausea.

Amber Abbott says she's been using marijuana for years and enjoys educating women about its health benefits.

"You feel safe in an environment with other women talking about your experiences, the different strains you should use for what ails you and what doesn't," Abbott said.

Many of the products do not contain THC. Rather, they contain a non-psycho-active element of marijuana called CBD, used to alleviate pain and induce calm.

"It's mostly about health benefits," said marijuana expert Natalie Walker. "Getting high is just an added bonus if you want to. You don't have to get high."

"Pot parties" are becoming increasingly popular in Southern California.

Jenny Volodarsky is now focusing her party-planning business on bringing cannabis products and educators right into people's homes.

"Every detail we will take care of and make sure that it's a seamless and informative, or just a fun night," she said.

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