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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Great advice Lori. Again. And thank you, as I will remember this should I ever become a smoker again.
I am their dad, and they are 3, 4 & 10. I think I've hidden things pretty well from the younger two (up until now, I have thought like Adam's dad, hoping I could hide things until the problem goes away magically one day. But it doesn't, you are right). I think the eldest knows. He knows about his mum (mom to you) too I think - I have unfortunately led her astray, towards ashtrays and lingering smells, but she too is now 3 weeks nicotine free (and coping well). But yeah, I need to be honest, I can see that now, but as Adam's dad would most likely say to you, why go there now I've quit?
I've heard so much about this book Debra. I didn't realise it was a free resource?
But thank you again, I have so much to read. I hope to get round to this also as it has helped so many people
Forgot to say Lori, UK is spot on. Well worked out.
Ok, so I can't tell from your writing if you are from Canada or the US? Judging by your bedtime last night though, I think East Coast either way?
I agree, there isn’t a good reason to go there now. But you should always be honest when they get older and are curious about smoking as most teens get. I think if we can use our experience and teach them through honesty what the addiction is like then all these years we spent smoking won’t be entirely in vain. Well, they likely are but something good may as well come of it. Teens don’t often listen but you can be a good example. Times are different too. When I was a teen in the upper Midwest (Michigan) we had a smoking are in my High School. Now kids are taught much more truth about smoking.
That is fantastic that your wife and you are both quitting! You could really use this as something to come together and celebrate with. Not to mention encourage and keep each other accountable with. Be honest with her too and let her know you have moments of doubt and reluctance. She likely does too and it may be helpful to you both.
Just don’t think putting it off is going to make any difference and you would just start back to end up wishing you were where you are. Keep going. It gets a lot better pretty quickly. The time is going to go by regardless so make it good time.
Have you shared the forum with your wife or is it better something for just you? Either way, stay close to here for a few weeks. All the data shows that success rates are higher with support whether you are cold turkey or using NRT.
Honestly, I still romance the smoke at least once a day. But I don’t want to be a smoker again. It just was not that good in so many ways.
I like breathing better and smelling better and not having the struggle.
I am in the Pacific Northwest, Portland, Oregon. I’m just a night owl. I did grow up in the Midwest though. Have you been here to the US? I’m told the PNW climate is much like England.
I've not been to the US yet Lori. But I do hope your weather is better than ours, as it rains way too often here. That does really make is appreciate the good days though, and we go all out and celebrate big time for easy and every sunny day and that makes living here worthwhile. That plus the abundance of culture. You been to Europe ever?
What's the north west like? Sounds pretty cool up there to me, and I've certainly heard a lot about some of the big cities around you.
My wife has been solid. But she only ever smoked a small proportion of what I did. She is coping well and doesn't need this forum. It's not her style anyways, as she prefers talking and watching stuff to reading and writing like I do. But you are right, we have helped each other by displaying (often fake) strength when the other person has had a moment of weakness.
I just had a fairly intense craving again, and I tried to take note of the sensation. The urges can take different forms, but the one I had just now is similar to the waves I experienced in the first 10 days: it built to a crescendo fairly quickly and the more attention I gave it, the worse it felt. And if I listened carefully, my heart was racing (with desire? panic? hope? desperation?)... I was also struggling for breath; it was almost as if there wasn't enough oxygen in my surroundings to allow me to take my fill in any satisfactory way, and this could only be rectified by breathing in the sweet smoke of a deliciously burning cigarette.
Definitely psychological, smoke is not sweet.
“You make it good or bad - hard or easy, its all in your mind”
Mmhmm. That about sums it up.
Well, Shak, you know that saying “fake it til you make it”? There is truth to that. Sound like you’ve each found your individual way of coping and still are able to support each other. Have you seen some posts from others on here who live with a smoker? Wow. I don’t envy that at all. My partner smoked as a teen then wisely stopped. He is tremendously supportive and encouraging, as is my daughter. I never smoked in the house or car so those weren’t triggers for me. I did avoid my back deck for the first couple of weeks. Hell would have to freeze over for me to give up my morning coffee, so I just had it in different spot. With the early light now and warmer mornings I have been back on my back deck with coffee with no problem. I did reach into pocket the first 3 days I started going back out there in the morning even though I hadn’t smoked for over a month! Speaking of programmed. I think that is another think for me to dislike about it actually. I definitely feel I’ve regained some independence with quitting and am not as automatic in functions. Nice.
That sounds familiar. You articulate it clearly. It does sound a tad similar to a mild panic attack and that makes sense too. The addict part of the psyche is pretty manipulative, and not always on a completely conscious level of awareness. “What on earth! How am I supposed to do this without a smoke?!”
The first couple of weeks my cravings were so mental. I actually wrote on here wondering if that was normal. Then after a while, I started o get that physical part you described! It took my breath away. It was rather awful. I found if I stilled myself, and slowed my breath and cleared my mind I could almost see this separate part in there that was akin to a spoiled teenager. My wiser self wasn’t caving or listening so that part had a little tantrum. Now I can separate it pretty easily and actually watch it. I know this sounds a bit like a horror movie (some parts of my life are close!) but it is true. We all have a variety of facets to our psyches and I believe it is possible to get to know many of them as individual pieces which allows the core wise self to have recognition and manage them.
You did well! Sounds like you rode the wave and were able to piece it out after.
I also have read on here from many folks about the emotional side of this. Many have spoken about how they have come to realize their smoking masked their emotions for a long time. That makes sense to me too.
Coming to terms with it as an addiction has allowed me to really see the force of it and I am often humbled by that addictive force. Not in the sense of giving in to the craves, but humbled by the sheer force of the addiction itself. Definitely not to be underestimated.
If that happens again, just take a mental step back and watch it play out while doing some deep breathing. It will pass.