Formerly known as the About.com Smoking Cessation support forum, this community is open to all who are recovering from nicotine addiction.
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Hi - by way of introduction, I've been smoking for 30 years or so. My mom smoked until she was dx with cancer 21 years ago & died 18 years ago from it at age 65 - too young. Yet, I continued to smoke. It's beyond stupid and ridiculous, I know.
My Dad quit 32 years ago, and I always thought that would spare him. But turns out his recent issues are really cancer; he's fortunate in that it's early and operable.
I learn this on Monday - my Dad makes me give him my word I'll quit immediately. I mean, my mom's long dead and now he has it.; it's a no-brainer right - odds are not in my favor. So, I wasn't exactly planning on quitting this week but here I am.
I haven't smoked in about 44 hours. I'm beyond miserable and CONSUMED by thoughts of smoking, insane cravings, heart palpitations, giant knots in chest, anxiety through the roof, and I can't stop bursting into tears - for 2 days! I am weepy on and off all day, even busy with work stuff. I WANT to want to quit - I know how awful it is, but the disgusting truth is while I was an ashamed smoker, I still liked it. I'm taking deep breaths, I went for walks, I'm telling myself it's just a wave that will pass, but there have been points where I think I'm losing my mind. I feel like a fraud that will never be able to do this. I don't believe drinking cold water is doing anything for cravings.
Wrapped up in this is my neuroses that it's too late for me, as I'm just a bit younger than when my Dad quit all those years ago, and still he got cancer; my guilt for breaking my promise to my mother that I would quit almost 20 years ago. I'm worried about my Dad, I don't think I ever handled my Mom's death well and that's all right back in my face; I feel guilty about making my Dad's diagnosis about MY struggles...I'm a complete and utter mess.
My kind hubby (who quit smoking cold turkey 12 years ago but has picked it up during quarantine boredom, but is not really a die-hard smoker like me) thinks that my trying to do this cold turkey is way too much this week, and that cutting down, or possibly wellbutrin or something is a better way for me as I'm making myself insane. Idk what to do - I don't know if I CAN tough this out much longer, but maybe I can? Maybe this is the worst of it and if I 'just have one' and go the gradual way, I will have to go through all this again? Or will NRT or other assistance make it more manageable?
If you made it this far - thanks for reading the ramble.
I went cold turkey and believe me, it gets way easier after the first 3 days and even easier and easier as the days go by. If you can get through the next 24 hours you are well on your way. If you pick up an NRT to help, you will have to quite those eventually as well. Do not smoke - not even one. That is the worst thing you can do.
Go for a walk, have a long bath or maybe go swimming at your local pool - do anything to distract yourself. Suck on ice water through a straw seems to help many. Eat whatever comfort food you want. Just do not smoke.
If you went this far, you are more than half-way through the worst of it. If you have to cry or scream or punch the pillow, do it. Whatever it takes to get through.
You are well on your way - keep going......
Hi there struggle. I'm sorry about your parents. This must be an awfully stressful time for you. Like you, I liked smoking. Of course I didn't like the smell and cost, but I truly enjoyed it, right? That may not be so. I've done some reading and the part that I liked was putting my brain at ease. My brain was crying to be soothed and a cigarette would do that. Aaahh. Relief, right? No fooling, this is a terrible addiction. Withdrawals can put you through the wringer. On the board a few days ago I posted because I was crying on a bratwurst. I wanted to smoke so badly. I cried off and on all day. It was miserable but the people here talked me down off the ledge. You are not alone, many people get weepy and sensitive while quitting. Like I said, this addiction is so pervasive it's unreal. As for nicotine replacement or medications to help you quit, a lot of people here have used them. This is the fight of your life so if you need help, get it. I used patches and lozenges and now am nicotine free. But like I said, I'm still crying in sauerkraut sometimes. I think that you have to want to quit, and if you don't really want to you won't stay smober. Quit not just for your parents, quit for yourself. It is NEVER too late to quit. The health benefits are amazing and I feel like I can breathe again. I didn't realize how shallow my breathing was until now. You can do this, I know you can. Not every trick works for everyone. I like the straw thing, but some people don't. I like pistachios because it keeps my hands busy cracking them and they are so tasty! Experiment around, find stuff that helps you. Crafts, riding a bike, puzzles, meditation, anything to take your mind off of it. If I'm watching tv and I want to smoke I immediately get up and do something else. I change tasks the minute I want to smoke. I don't want to sit there and power through it. I want to get distracted. You can and will do this if you want to! Read the articles here and keep posting. The people here are great and the stories are powerful. Don't be too hard on yourself. You are absolutely not alone.
you can do it! focus on one day, one hour at a time. do whatever you have to to not smoke. candies, brush teeth, floss, toothpicks, jumping jacks. Like Anne2020, it gets easier - which isn't to say it won't stink at first, but it gets easier. keep a journal to record your quit journey.
stop worrying that its too late for quitting to make a difference in your health - wrong, wrong, wrong. It WILL feel so great to kick the addiction and no longer have to satisfy cravings, then feel guilty. It's gonna take time, one day, one hour at a time. don't look back. go, go, go.
June2019 - cold turkey quitter since 6-7-2019
Thanks. I'm hanging in there, barely, but I guess that's good enough for now.
Yes Strugglehard you will be struggling hard especially in the first three to four months. The first week is Hell Week , then comes Heck Week, them comes Emotionlly Tired Week. The blues hit us but it's because nicotine is a stimulant and now our addicted brain must work without its fix. You'll see as the weeks pass the craves do fade a little month by month. I believed what other long term quitters kept saying that it will get easier - just not yet. Our brain was taken over by the addiction. Cigarettes have so many poisonous chemicals that we made our body accept. When we quit our poor nervous system takes a hit and we are anxious and jittery but this will all go away once you are free. I used every nicotine replacement stuff to stay off cigarettes and it worked for me. Others like yourself try cold turkey - we are all different but we all accept that we will feel crappy for quite a while.
Be proud to be a quitter and smile every time you get through another crave. Read everything on this forum, also read Allen Carr's book The Easy Way to Quit Smoking and there are countless YouTube videos about quitting. I finally got free after 44 years of smoking. My biggest reason for quitting was when I became a grandma. I sure didn't want to leave my grandchild with the image of me puffing away on a sticky cigarette. So, if I could quit so can you just stay stubborn, committed and dedicated. Life truly is better as a quitter.
"Quitting isn't for Sissies!" I quit poisoning myself Sept. 27, 2013