Doctors of Natural Medicine

Is it Ok to Tell your Coworkers that You Smoke? Marijuana and Your Career

Table of Contents

Mixing smoking marijuana and work can be tricky. So, think about whether you would tell your coworkers or employers about your consumption of marijuana. So, is it okay to tell my coworkers that I smoke? Here’s the scoop on how to navigate Marijuana and your career.
marijuana and your career

Before disclosing any information, one must be mindful of the employer’s rules regarding an employee’s use of marijuana.

Will smoking marijuana ruin my reputation at work? The answer depends a lot on the environment in which you work, the detail you share, and your employer’s attitude toward marijuana use.

Employers frequently find themselves in a tough situation when trying to uphold federal regulations or corporate drug-use guidelines based on federal law while also accommodating state laws that permit the consumption of marijuana for medical purposes.

Employers should study state laws on prejudice against marijuana users in work and ensure that policies adopted comply with state anti-discrimination laws to maintain workplace security and follow federal and state laws.

While it appears that employers can continue to enforce rules prohibiting or limiting the recreational consumption of marijuana in most states that permit medical marijuana use, this strategy may change in light of subsequent court rulings.

telling coworker about smoking marijuana

Marijuana and Work - Balancing Personal Privacy and Workplace Transparency 

The worry that legalizing marijuana may encourage workers to consume it before or during work is one of the factors that obscure discussions of business policies around marijuana usage. Companies are perfectly within their rights to take measures to stop this from happening, as it very well could.

An organization can enforce strict rules against using marijuana at work or on the clock. They have significantly less control over what employees do during their nights and weekends off from work. Even so, there are specific positions and situations where authority can enact rigorous rules.

Companies are still free to establish their policy about marijuana use, even if it is legal in a particular state. Since failing to do so would drastically decrease their labor pool, many people tolerate off-duty use while still establishing explicit workplace norms.

Read where is medical marijuana legal!

medical marijuanas and work

Will Smoking Marijuana Affect My Career?

The psychoactive component of marijuana distorts the senses and affects the speed of reaction, coordination, and other motor skills. These impacts can be fatal for someone working machinery, operating a forklift, or driving.

The Numbers

Moreover, employees who tested positive for marijuana had 55% more workplace accidents, 85% more injuries, and 75% more absences than those who tested negative, according to research published by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

Also, employers are capable of doing background checks about someone’s marijuana usage and work. They would prefer keeping employees who are more productive and capable of doing work without risking any legal conflicts. Performance is essential in maintaining a job, so if you plan on telling or accidentally telling your colleagues about your marijuana consumption, you should keep a good performance rating to prove yourself worthy of your job.

Key takeaway: It's your life but Be Mindful

So, will smoking marijuana affect my career? Ultimately, the answer is dependent on you. Work-life balance is important, and what you do beyond work is out of your employer and colleagues’ business.

However, sharing a part of one’s life may be inevitable, so being mindful of the company and state rules regarding your leisure activity of using marijuana is greatly advised to keep you from trouble.

If you have any questions about using marijuana, it never hurts to consult a doctor.


Can I openly discuss my marijuana use with coworkers?

While workplace cultures vary, openly discussing marijuana use with coworkers is generally not recommended. Marijuana use remains a sensitive topic, and its legality and social acceptance differ across regions. Exercise caution and consider the potential impact on professional relationships.

Can I smoke marijuana and work?

In general, smoking marijuana during work hours is not advisable and may violate workplace policies. Most employers have strict rules regarding drug use on the job, and violating these policies can have serious consequences, including potential termination.

Can I use medical marijuana at work if it's prescribed by a doctor?

Even if medical marijuana is legally prescribed, using it at work may still be prohibited by employer policies. It's important to communicate openly with your employer and understand workplace regulations regarding medical marijuana use.

Author: J.P. Carrol

J.P. is an accomplished writer with a lifelong passion for a range of subjects, including medical marijuana. As lead copywriter at, he writes daily for an audience of 100k+ and is deeply committed to helping businesses achieve their full potential with his guidance and expertise.