Mom Who Wants to QUIT SMOKING

Updated on April 21, 2008
A.D. asks from Sherwood, OR
48 answers

I have been a smoker for many years. I started smoking when I was 16 and I am currently 43. Wow, that's 27 years. I have been able to quit whenever I was pregnant and during nursing. I have 4 children, so 8 out of those 27 years I was a non smoker.

I have 2 older kids and two younger kids. Sometimes I feel very over whelmed as a Mom and smoking seems to be "My Time". I DO NOT smoke in my home or around ANY of my children. However, they know I smoke. I know that I am sending a terrible message to them, but that does not seem to motivate me to quit.

I smoke approx. 1/2 a pack a day. It scares me to think that I will be a smoker for the rest of my life, or I will get some form of cancer. Sometimes I think that is what it will take for me to quit. Sounds pathetic, I know.

I am seeking any kind of help, advice, guilt trip, anything. I have tried the patches and they make me feel sick, I did succeed for a month with Chantix and then stopped taking it. I have to get out of my mind that smoking is "ME TIME". It's the only way to be by myself without the kids needing me. I use it to deal with stress, lonliness, comfort, etc.

Even though I am scared to quit (don't ask me why) ... I HAVE to quit!

So, there it is ... LET ME HAVE IT!!!!

Thanks,
A.

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

Featured Answers

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.A.

answers from Eugene on

Hey A., So I am sorry, but I do not have any advice for you. Just wanted to tell you that it is not pathetic to think you may have to get cancer first before you quit! Crazy! But not pathetic. And no one can say any different if they have never smoked. I smoke also, but only at night if my husband and I have a drink. Still not good, but sometimes I feel like it is my friend! Oprah has had a couple really good shows on this week about quiting smoking. That might give you a boost. I think it is different for everyone, so GOOD LUCK, and if you quit, you should post it for all of us to see how stong you are! J.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

C.P.

answers from Eugene on

I am a smoker too, i did quit once by using the patch.. it works great.. if you have a walmart near you their brand of the patch is a lot cheaper.. i want to quit again because i'm tired of how it makes me feel, but money is an issue.. i would give that a shot.. the first time i was off the patch after 3 weeks of using it and was smoke free for almost 2 months.. it was my choice to start smoking again.. Give it a shot and good luck :)

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

G.B.

answers from Seattle on

Oh my gosh, it sounds like you just described me!

I saw this ad on TV and it sounds like a good approach.

Here's the website:

http://www.becomeanex.org/

Good luck. Maybe I'll follow my own advice whenever I'm "ready".

More Answers

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.T.

answers from Portland on

A.,
I smoked for years, about 12 total. I too quit while pregnant and nursing. It was my "me time" as well. I haven't touched one in eight years now, but wanted to share some of the crazy things I did when I had the strong urge to smoke but wanted to get past the moment of weekness without caving: RUN out the door, day or night, shoes or none, rain or shine. RUN! Run around the block and come home panting like a dog. or Take a ICE cold shower. If you have a plastic shower surround, bang your head against the shower stall (softly) and chant a mantra of your choosing such as SMOKING IS FOR LOSERS! I AM A WINNER! or Crawl in between your mattress and box spring and stay there till the feeling passes or Attempt to eat a grapefruit, skin and all. My oldest child would just crack up and sometimes join in on the silliness(except for the matress trick). Once I even got my family to attempt to make a human totem pole in the living room for the camara which was on timer. You quitting smoking is for you but is a great gift for your family. Let them support and distract you through the tough spots. Just refuse to cave in. Get a moments rush in another way! Be creative ;)Find a way to laugh. Be a little crazy. Quitting smoking requires you to work outside the box. Keep at it. If you love the hand to mouth thing, whole sunflower seeds may help keep you busy. The longer you are on the wagon, the easier it is.

2 moms found this helpful
Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

P.G.

answers from Seattle on

A., I think it is great you WANT to quit - that is the first important step. Oprah had a whole show on this topic this week - either Monday or Tuesday. I bet you could go online and watch it to see if anything there would be helpful. I didn't get to watch the entire episode, but there was a theme about something to the effect of, "the smoking is just a symptom" - which could be what you describe as loneliness, needing time for yourself, stress relief, etc. I don't smoke, but two of my friends who were long-term smokers quit together so they could support each other throughout the process and in those weak moments - so if you have someone that would do it with you that could be helpful. Another suggestion is to find things to replace the smoking with that are healthy and make you feel good. Think of how you are feeling at those times when you smoke and try to find other things to satisfy the want/need. Ideas: bubble baths by candlelight with a glass of wine when no one is allowed to bother you, watching something you like on TV with a favorite snack, coffee with a girlfriend, relaxing or energizing music depending on your mood, going for a walk, whatever kind of exercise you like, etc. Ask for help from those around you, and let them know you need and want their support. You could even tell your kids how much you wish you didn't smoke and how hard it is to stop, but that it is so important since you want to be around for as long as you can to enjoy life with them because they mean so much to you. That would also send a message that you care about yourself. That is a great message to send our kids - we're not perfect but we are trying to make our lives as good as they can be. Don't wait until you get sick! Maybe set a goal of putting the money you are spending on cigarettes toward something you'd like - a vacation, new clothes, a spa day, whatever...and I think some physical support would be good too from what I've heard whether it is a patch, gum, some type of med that delivers the nicotine for awhile so you can break the habit of actually lighting, holding and dragging on the cigarette - my friends who quit together used cinnamon sticks to hold onto when they felt that need for that shape in their hand. Your hair, skin, clothes, everything will smell better after you've stopped. I wish you the best in your quest and bet you can do it!!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.B.

answers from Medford on

I quit 11 years ago in March. I did several things to make it happen. I used those plastic filters that you put on the cigarette to take some of the tar. It was supposed to work by the end of the filters, but I washed them and kept using them, but smoked less. Then, my step dad said I would have to see myself not smoking, even in my dreams. Then, I found a flyer for a church I wanted to go to and began praying about it along with other things. The timing was around my mom's birthday. She really wanted me to quit, so it became her birthday present that I quit. So, pray, and ask God to deliver you from this addiction, considering your children motherless when you die young from smoking. See yourself without cigarettes, picture yourself smoke free, healthy and growing old (instead of dying young). Consider it a gift to your parents, children, grandchildren who would otherwise lose you too early. I pray you are successful at this.
Blessings,
J.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

B.M.

answers from Portland on

HI A.,
I want you to know that you are not pathetic at tall. Trying to quit smoking is one of the hardest things to do. My mom still smokes too and I wish she would quit, but she has to do it. I know there are many things you can do for "me time". Try giving yourself a special treat of time all by going to the store, or getting out for a walk. Try chewing gum. I do know they have some great things out now to help you quit smoking. Talk to your dr or pharmacist about the new things that they have out if you don't already know. Find a friend that will be there for you to help you along the way. Having a support system is important. Remember to take it day by day. Love yourself. Tell yourself that you are the best mom, the best friend, the best you and that you deserve to be free from this habit. Add up all the money that you use to buy cigerettes and find a new way to spend that money. Put it into your retirement account or use it to do something that you have always wanted to do. The problem with cigerettes is that they have chemicals in them that release into your body that make you not want to quit. That is way it is so hard to feel that you want to do it. You already know how bad it is for you and for anyone who may inhale it, so now you need to turn to the dr.s and get that support to put you in control. Best of luck to you... IF you are religious, pray, ask our Father in Heaven to help you in your desire to quit this awful habit and he will be there to help.
B.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.S.

answers from Eugene on

Since you had the motivation and ability to stop while pregnant and nursing, how about the idea that your children will always need you, and smoking will shorten your life? plus the role model thing. Please, if you can't do it on your own, get some therapy or a support group or something to help you deal with this and develop other ways of having "me time." I've never smoked but used to be suicidal, and it was my children who kept me here. They need you. I'm sure you can find wonderful things to do for yourself to have the time you deserve.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

I.D.

answers from Portland on

Hi A.,

I suggest quitting cold turkey. They urge to smoke is actually our bodies telling us to top off the nicotine levels. We are in withdrawal. Cutting down just keeps you in awful nicotine withdrawal all the time.

It takes 3 days -- only three days -- to get the nicotine out of your system. After that, you can battle the psychological urge, but that physical withdrawal will be done.

It's a scary thought, I know... But three days, and that's it for the drug part of that addiction.

I went to www.whyquit.com and white-knuckled it over there for a while. The site is very very informative, and you will find that after reading around over there, you will never be able to smoke another "innocent" cigarette again.

One thought that keeps me quit is that my son has to navigate this new, confusing world, and he has to field hurt feelings, overwhelming emotions, frustrations, and he has to face it all naturally. I would never say to him, "Oh, baby, that must have really made you mad! Here have a beer and a cigarette." I cannot expect more from him than I do from myself.

Also, I try to remember that I have no right to jeopardize his security by playing fast and loose with his mamma's health.

I wish you such good luck with quitting!

You might also want to check out Alan Carr's book, The Easy Way to Quit Smoking.

You can do this!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.B.

answers from Richland on

I commend you for realizing that you are slowly killing yourself with tobacco and that you want to quit. You're right; it is setting a bad example for your children. It can also take your life, and nobody wants that. And I know a tobacco habit is extremely hard to quit. But since you've done it through your pregnancies and nursing, you know you CAN do it. If you're a Christian, you can get help at http://bible.com/bibleanswers_result.php?id=226. Another good resource is a 5-day plan to stop smoking: http://www.newstarthealthcare.com/article.php?id=9

Good luck!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

L.P.

answers from Seattle on

Hi A.,
First of all, quit beating yourself up about this. Most of us ex-smokers tried to quit many many times before it finally took! Find yourself the Enlightened Smoker's Guide to Quitting~ by Bear Jack Gebhardt. It really helps you understand the mental/emotional side to smoking. You need to feel better about yourself first, and understand the reasons behind why you started to smoke in the first place. (My husband quit smoking after 25 years after reading this book 1 1/2 years ago) Like everything, quitting smoking is an "inside-out" job. In addition, I used a trick that really helped me~ my natural inclination to procrastinate~ whenever the urge would hit, I would tell myself that I would go have one in a minute...before I knew it, I was busy doing something else and the urge had passed. In the evening I made sure my hands were busy with some sort of craft or instrument~ knitting, cross stitch, a guitar~ anything! Quitting is something you do for yourself~ not for anyone else. You can do this!
Good Luck,
L. P.
(quit 3 1/2 years ago!)

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

S.G.

answers from Yakima on

ME TOO!!!

I too am a "closet smoker" I quit when I was pregnant and nursing. My husband is a smoker and so it was just too enticing to not start again. I too don't smoke in the house or around my daughter, I don't even think she knows I smoke. I only smoke maybe 5-6 a cigeretts a day becuase I also work full time for a school. I know if I only smoke 5-6 day why not just quit? Same as you, that is my "me time". Any info you get I would appreciate sending on my way. I want to quit too but I feel that with us it may be the habit not necassarily the addiction. What do you think?

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

H.B.

answers from Eugene on

I started smoking when I was 15. I am now 39. I quit almost 3 years ago & have no desire to start up again! However, I still smoke in my dreams - but feel guilty about it.

Here's what I did:

First of all - I switched to American Spirit - because they don't have any added chemicals like most brands. I got down to 1/2 a pack or less a day.

My health insurance (Kaiser) had me go thru a class - which was very informative & helped me understand why it is so addictive. Basically, the nicotine creates new neuro-transmitters in your brain that need to be constantly occupied. This is what caused the cravings.

So after the class - they gave me a prescription for a mild anti-depressant (Wellbutrin) and advised me to take it for a specified time (I think it was at least 2 weeks) before quitting. The Wellbutrin helped keep those transmitters happy while I was losing the cravings.

They also gave me some patches which I didn't like using because it was too much nicotine for my system. Besides - I didn't want nicotine in my body anymore - right?!

A water bottle became my new crutch for having something to do with my hands - plus it also helps flush out the nicotine.

You'll notice your sense of smell & taste improves. I can no longer stand the smell of them. I can smell it on people really easy & it reminds me that I used to smell that way - even though I only smoked outdoors!

Best of luck to you!!!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

B.D.

answers from Seattle on

I hadn't smoked as long as you. I did smoke for 15 yr. I started young and naive. I managed to quit when I was preg as well. I started again after he was 2 mo. :( At first, I didn't want to quit and enjoyed it. But, as my son started to get older (he'll be 5 next month) he started understanding. He didn't want to hug me, would tell me I stink, and would even attempt to spray me with the bathroom spray. ICK! I realized that I wasn't going to be able to quit unless I WANTED to. You have to WANT to quit...not for your kids, not for your parents, not for your friends...not for anyone but YOU. And those pesky experts are right when they say it takes several tries to get it down. I tried SEVERAL times. I tried the gum, I tried cold turkey, I tried doing it with friends, I tried pills from the dr., and I've even tried the patch. None of it worked by itself. What did work? Planning it out, changing my routine, changing my eating habits, where I hang out, who I hang out with...well heck...MY WHOLE LIFE. It was NOT easy by any means, but when you have your dr basically tell you that you are going to end up with a heart attack by the time you are 40 if you don't stop, you start rethinking everything. I'm a single mom and not only does my baby and everyone else need me...I...I need me. :D So, I called a stop smoking hotline to help guide me in the right direction. We set up a plan a month in advance to help me. I bought some yellow sticky pads. These help because when trying to accomplish a goal, it's easier to do when it's written down. TRUST ME. :D I wrote on all these sticky notes affirmation or reasons to quit and I stuck them anywhere I'm likely to look in my home. I made sure to get rid of all my smoking partners and accessories. I didn't want to do this, but if my friends want to help, they will without question. I would slowly change my habits until my actual quit date. If I smoked a cig in the morn when I first got up, I would take a shower instead, eat breakfast and THEN smoke. I slowly cut myself down until I was down to about 3 cigs a day. What helped was when I had the urge to smoke when I was at home, I would go and brush my teeth. I got me some pearly whites now! :D When I was out, I would chew on some sugar free Trident gum. I had Dum-Dum suckers and Jolly Ranchers as well, but the gum has alot less sugar. It takes time and patience. Just remember, don't be hard on yourself if you slip up once, just tell yourself I'm starting over. And keep trying...keep trying...keep trying. What helped me was to think about how many days I have NOT smoked a cig. Within the first week of being completely free...I could smell a banana in it's peeling. I was shocked. I haven't smelled a banana like that in years. I was so thrilled, I even went to the grocery store with my son and started smelling the fruit! Anywho, just have patience in yourself and remember that in order to help others, you have to want to do this for yourself foremost. I've been cig free for 2 1/2 yr now. :D Sorry this is so long, I just want you to know that there are others out there who struggled as well. *hug*

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

R.S.

answers from Asheville on

A.,
I am not a smoker...and I read the advice from a lot of the women. Great advice. Our friend just quit this year after almost 20 years...he did it cold turkey and also had to stop drinking coffee since for him they were hand in hand.

The thing I wanted to suggest is you have smoking connected to "me time". One idea, why don't you use the money you'll save not smoking to do some nice things for yourself as "me time"!

Good Luck! I know you'll feel so great once you are able to beat this addiction both mentally and physically.

R.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

D.M.

answers from Seattle on

Wow!!! I felt like I was reading my own story! I started smoking at 16 as well and I am 44 now. I have two girls and stopped smoking for both their pregnancies and breast feedings. The habit always seemed to creep back into my life - especially at a strenuous time. I too felt like it was "my time" - take a break etc. I knew I needed to quit and finally think I have kicked it for good. I used the patch and the gum. I never slept with the patch on though - you can get some crazy dreams! Plus, you don't smoke when you're asleep so I didn't see any reason to use it at night.

One other thing I did too was suggested to me by a friend. I read the book The Easy Way to Stop Smoking - A Book by Allen Carr. I didn't use his plan but his reasonings got me thinking differently about smoking. It's not really relaxing to have "me time" by smoking because of the guilt you feel about it. It's much more relaxing to know you are FREE from the chains of smoking - where can I go, are my kids around, etc.

I finally quit for the last time on my 44th birthday so it's now been about 2 months. So far, so good - I really have no desire to smoke.

Dig your heels in girl - you can do it!!!

D. M

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

K.E.

answers from Corvallis on

I started when I was 14, quit at 42. Same as you, I quit for 3 years when I was pregnant and nursing, etc. When I started again I always went outside and away from my child. I had quit several times before but always started up again (I can not have "just one") I finally did the thing I never thought I'd do, I went to a group hypnosis session. I left feeling it was mostly scare tactics but let me tell you - I just passed my 5 year date as a non-smoker! I don't know if it was the hypnosis or if I was ready but it worked for me. Good luck, it is tough but I am so happy not to have that anchor around my neck anymore.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.F.

answers from Portland on

My friend used this book to stop and it worked well for her.

http://www.amazon.com/Easy-Way-Stop-Smoking-Non-Smokers/d...

I am so terribly sorry you are facing this struggle but you are doing a fabulous thing for your kids. I can't personally sympathize about smoking, but I've decided recently to try to quit drinking because my 3 yr. old asks me every time I'm drinking something, is that WINE?!? So just know you aren't the only one struggling with an addiction and trying to be the best parent possible.
I hope this book might help you.
I'll keep you in my prayers.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.B.

answers from Anchorage on

Wow, you got alot of advice! I tried to quit a million times with success on try one million and one. It's great you know your triggers. What worked for me is that I happened to have a vacation scheduled so I was out of my element for 2 weeks. That's when I did it. The first few days your body will go through physical withdrawl, which is just going to suck no matter what. Just don't let yourself give in during those days, which you already know from quitting before. After that the urge is going to come when you feel overwhelmed or in need of "me" time. Pick something to do to replace the association with smoking. Go for a walk or read part of a good magazine or something else rewarding every single time you would have otherwise smoked. It will take about a month for the new habit to be engrained. But watch out for traps. For example I had the urge to smoke if I sat on my back patio for months after I quit (that's where I always smoked) and I still, after 5 years, have a slight urge when I drink. Just be aware of your triggers and don't let yourself rationalize picking up a cigerrette ever or you'll be back at square one again.

And keep trying each and every time you don't succeed. One day you will.

Truly, good luck!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

K.O.

answers from Portland on

There are lots of other things you can do for "me time" besides smoke. Yes, you are sending a horrible message to your kids. Not only that smoking is ok, but also that you don't value yourself very much, and that there aren't alternative and better ways to cope with stress. Also... my mom smoked for just about that long, maybe even a little longer, and she quit! She smoked way more than you do, but once she finally commited to it, she did it! And you can too!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

M.M.

answers from Eugene on

Try this. Since you are currently a smoker, though wishing to be a non-smoker in the future, for a few days, write down why you take each smoke that you have throughout the day.
I did this when I quit smoking. At first I thought I wouldn't have a reason. But I did, I had three main reasons, and it was interesting and a bit surprising what they were. A few weeks later when I did quit smoking, the self-knowledge I gained through this simple activity helped me to successfully quit.
Some other information that helped me; the nicotine in cigarettes is the addictive part, and the reason we want to smoke; it isn't however the worst ingredient as far as harming our health. that is probably the tars and the carbon monoxide. But nicotine is a mild stimulant, and when we smoke, our blood level rises rapidly as the smoke is absorbed from the lungs, then drops fairly rapidly, bringing on the craving for another cigarette. Thus the cigarette is the perfect vehicle to deliver nicotine in a way that promotes addiction.
It also explains this common dilema. Have you ever done this? You're driving along a freeway at night. It's raining. You come to some road construction, you are being routed into diversionary lanes and you can barely see where you are going. Next thing you know, you are lighting a cigarette, and you say to yourself, why am I doing this when I already need two hands to drive and can barely keep my car on the road? Does this sound like a familiar situation? Of course you are craving a dose of nicotine to stimulate your senses in able to handle the situation . . .

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.C.

answers from Seattle on

Hi A.,
I guess the first thing I would do is to concentrate on all of the things your husband and kids notice about your smoking. The first thing, of course, is the smell of you. You will never believe how bad it is until you quit. I guess I should have prefaced this with the fact that I also smoked for 37 years. You have little holes in your clothes, your teeth aren't as white as they could be, trying to find a good way to get rid of the filters, etc. The list goes on. I was lucky and just the thinking about all of these things helped me a lot and one day, as I was having a cigarette out in the rain by myself, I looked at the end of the filter and couldn't believe I was such a fool for smoking all of these years and ripped off the filter and threw the cig out into the wet grass. It was my last and I never wanted another. Please don't be afraid to try. There are other things to give you your own time. Read a book in a little nook or something, even if it's only ten minutes away at a time. I wish you all of the good luck there is as it is really your own head space that will make you, someday soon, just quit. I do have to suggest that if you need something in your mouth that the gum Extra that is green is probably the most perfect pacifier you can find. The flavor lasts for a very long time and finally you just get sick of chewing:o) Good luck again. A.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

D.D.

answers from Seattle on

I quit smoking about 13 years ago. I had started when I was 14 and I was about 34 when I quit (20 years!). I was down to 1 pack every 2 - 3 days (like you). Then I cut it down more and more. I talked myself into how bad the cigarettes TASTE. The fact that they have arsenic and other very harmful chemicals in them, and the tobacco companies tamper around with the nicotine to make it much more powerful than it is, is another incentive to quit.

I quit with the idea that If I really wanted a cigarette later down the line, I could if I was with another smoker (I know this sounds crazy), but not to be a regular smoker again. I would not buy any more cigarettes from that point on. I didn't use patches. I was afraid of being addicted to some drug instead of the cigarettes! Granted the first couple of weeks were the hardest. I got so grouchy that a non-smoking co-worker told me to get a cigarette (lol)! At that point I refused to smoke. I would just think about the hassle it was to have to go outside, away from everyone, shunned from society. It wasn't worth it anymore, because not even being able to go to a bar or a restaurant and have a cigarette - what's the point.

The point is, practice quitting. Do it a few times - preferably without the patch (why use another drug that you may become dependent upon). If you fail, and start again, try going longer the next time. I had several times where I attempted to quit before I did. Then as you practice quitting, don't feel like a failure, just persevere longer the next time. I found that it was the habit more than the nicotine that I was addicted to. ALSO, keep in mind, women smoke for different reasons than men. We tend to smoke to help us deal with our emotions - depression, or anxiety, whatever it is. Realize that, and try to find other ways to deal with those emotions, as well. I use prayer. Also, allow yourself the breaks you used to have with a cigarette - but with something else. Maybe with a celery stick or a carrot. Maybe a break going outside just smelling the fresh air. Whatever works for you. I applaude you for trying.

Maybe you can find a person to quit with. I actually quit with my husband. He restarted smoking because of me. Then I ended up quitting becauase (partially) of him. Also, I was coughing a lot and thought it was the cigarettes (turns out it's a sugar problem related to Candida - cough when I eat sugar) I got myself to the point where I could have a cigarette if I wanted, but wouldn't go back full bore into smoking. Now, if I try to have a cigarette, I cough my lungs out which means I couldn't go back if I tried.

By the way - DO NOT do hypnosis. People have had bad experiences with this where they quit smoking through hypnosis then committed suicide!! One of the various stories I heard, they quit through hypnosis then through themselves out a window in a high building and fell to their death. There is no short cut to this process. If you put your quitting underground in your subconcious, you can pay for it badly later on.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.C.

answers from Portland on

Okay, A., I smoked for 15 years, and quit when I was 30. I have never looked back (okay, it was tough the first few months - but I did it!).
Here is what I advise:
1. Quit beating yourself up about it (guilt is great incentive to give up).
2. Slowly lessen the amount of cigs you smoke - 1 less a day every week or every other week.
3. For the following 2-3 months, make carrot or celery sticks to munch on when you need to put something in your mouth. I did more celery than carrots, to avoid adding too much fructose or too many calories. plus, celery has a tiny bit of nicotine-like molecules (lots of sodium, too - hence, why I did carrots,too).
3. Make something else your "alone time" is a great idea. Run errands without the kids, and stop for coffee or tea. Or, you can take a class (maybe at a community center), or take up walking/hiking.

Use this as an opportunity to help your kids understand why they should never even start smoking... "not only does it cause cancer, it is so difficult to quit, and look how hard this is on all of us."

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

C.W.

answers from Seattle on

Hi there,

I used to smoke too and I started at about 12 and quit at about 30 for the most part, but I'd still smoke once in while for about 5 more years.

You have hit the nail on the head when you say that you see smoking as your me time. I remember thinking, how can I quit. I won't get those solitary moments on a bench or stroll through a foresty trail etc. This reminds me of the saying, "take your dog for a walk once a day even if you don't have a dog". Just a small break and fresh air can really clear your mind. Similarly if you're addicted to cigs, the payoff is even greater and the drive to do it more strong.

So, yes, you should switch your thinking around and if you're like me it will work.

I started looking at photos of post-mortem lungs of smokers. That visual crashed through any "me time" illusion I was creating because I thought, "this is what me time is doing to me".

Then I told myself, "I am a non smoker". Period. I do not have that familiar pack of smokes in my purse. I do not smoke. I do not go out for smoke breaks. etc. etc. Then when I would crave a cigarette, I'd tell myself, "that's weird that I'm craving a cigarette. I don't smoke". It was kind of like hypnotizing myself and it really helped me through...I had to say it all the time during that first week, but it got less frequent of course. And now I am totally free.

Other things I used to say were, "wow, it feels great to breathe in this clean air. My lungs are so thankful for the fresh air and the lack of smoky air. They are healing now as I breathe. I love the fresh air of the new me, the non smoker me".

Then I found out that if you quit for a while, you lungs begin to heal. Your cilia begin to start working as they should again and the build up of tar and toxins gets cleared out. So, it's even more damaging to just have one cigarette once in a while because your lungs have to start that healing all over again.

All the best.

C.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

D.R.

answers from Spokane on

I can totally relate to you. I am in the same boat but wanted to give you my 2 cents worth and hope it helps. I just went to my docter for some chantix and she said you have to take it 3 to 6 mos. after your quit day which alot of people don't do and relapse. You have to replace your "me time" with something else like reading which I am going to try to do. I feel almost like a hypocrit giving you this advice when I haven't tried it yet but that's my plan. We could be a good support system for each other. Good Luck!!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.W.

answers from Seattle on

First of all I want to say that I really admire you for being so honest and up front. You have gotten some really great advice and I hope that at least some of it helps you!

I am not a smoker, but I do know quite a few people who are. A good friend of mine quit for years and took it back up when her brother unexpectedly died about 4 months ago, so I definitely agree that smoking is a symptom. You need to find something that replaces it. Another friend of mine took up knitting when she was trying to quit and said it really helped because not only were her hands busy, but she felt great about herself when she finished a sweater or blanket, or whatever she was making.

I also know someone who tried hypnosis and she swears by it. I know some people are really leary of it, but it sounds like you have come to a point where you will do whatever it takes to quit so it might be worth while to look into - there are even highly respected clinical psychologists who work with hypnotherapy, so it's not like you'll have to go to some sketchy person. Seeing a therapist might not be a bad idea anyway, it could really help you with overcoming the issues that are causing you to smoke in the first place. I for one am a pretty firm believer it therapy - I think everyone could benefit from it!

Anyway, I wish you the best of luck.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

T.A.

answers from Corvallis on

Hi A.,

So glad to see that you are seeking help with this very difficult process. I see you have some great advice to far and I just have a couple things to add.

If the Chantix worked for a month, than I suggest trying that again. I have seen a lot of people have great success with it because it usually takes away the craving to smoke.

Sounds the most important this for you it to come up with a non-smoking plan. You need to be prepared to quit and pre-prepared for failure. One trick I have learned to it clean everything you have that smells of smoke now, before you quit: car, clothes, house, etc. This makes it so that you will really notice the effect if you do have even one smoke. Another trick I can suggest is to find something to fill the void. What is something you like to do that can fill in for you smoking breaks? Maybe a quick walk around the block?

You should also decide ahead of time what you will do if you break down and have that 1 smoke, or even 1 pack. Will you give up quitting? Will you let it go and keep trying?

Lastly, I don't see anything wrong with giving yourself little rewards for your pre-set goals to keep you going longer than a month. For example a new pair of shoes at one week, something else at one month, one year.......

Best of Luck!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

L.S.

answers from Seattle on

Hi A.,
I smoked for almost 8 years and literally tried everything available at that time to quit: the patch, gum, cold turkey, hypnosis...nothing worked. Then I tried a medication called Zyban and within 60 days I was a non smoker. This was a little over 7 years ago, so I'm not sure if that particular drug is still on the market, but it would definately be worth asking your health care provider about.
Quiting is hard! I remember when I felt stressed and not having a cigarette to mellow me out was hard! But it will get easier and once you realize how much money you're spending on those expensive things and notice the incredible difference of how you will feel physically, you'll never want to be a smoker again! Good luck! This is a great decision!!! Take care!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

M.L.

answers from Seattle on

REPLACE YOUR "ME TIME"!!! Every mom needs it, but smoking is NOT the way to get it!! Read a book, go to coffee, watch a soap opera! Heck, go to the bathroom, shut the door and tell say that you're "camping" if that's what it takes to get a few minutes a day alone! You know that smoking is bad for you and your family. It's also bad for me and my family. If you're someone who smokes outside the grocery store or anywhere else in public, stop. You are poluting the air that my baby breathes and I don't want her around that. My dad smoked until I was about 4 and I remember it as being so gross that I've never tried a cigarette (or anything else that one would smoke!). Give that to your kids so they can be healthy.

p.s. good luck to you! I'm rooting for you!! :)

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

P.C.

answers from Seattle on

Hi!
I don't smoke but I understand the stress and needing the me time.How about walking or joining a gym? Some people knit.Replace the bad habit with a good one and you get that positive me time in. I joined the YMCA because I would use food for comfort. I feel great.I'm getting back in shape and feeling better about myself.I love the Y because it is great for the whole family.I am in my 40's as well.Good luck.You can do it.I had a dear Aunt die of lung cancer and she stopped only after she got sick. We all still miss her.It doesn't have to come to that for you.I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

P. C.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

C.P.

answers from Seattle on

I have not been a smoker so I don't have any good advice. I just want to say, GOOD FOR YOU!! Work hard at it and you will be able to do it! My mom smoked until I was 16 - she tried quitting many times, but it finally stuck. All of us kids were so relieved. You can do it!

Just a thought - if cigarettes are your "me time," try to find other alternatives that would be pleasurable for you. 5 minutes to read, a short walk, a bath in the evening. I know it's hard to find time, especially with 4 kids, but since your husband is so supportive, maybe you can enlist his help when you need a little break.

GOOD LUCK!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

D.W.

answers from Medford on

Hello A.,

I'm doing a free conference call today at 2:00 pm pacific time that may just help you. I'm teaching a special technique on how to delete old negative patterns.

Please call ###-###-#### code 127682# If the timing is bad for you, email back and I'll send you a link. You just call in and listen. You will only pay the regular long distance fee.
I will have the group muted out so everyone can have their privacy.
I do encourage each one to be alone if possible so they can feel free to release all the negative bagage since the time of conception.

This techniques helps delete old programs that are holding us back from any goal like ,wellness, business,weight loss....ect. I believe It will help you quit smoking too.

Once you walk through the technique with me today you will be able to use it yourself as often as you need to.

This technique changed my life a couple years ago and i'm compelled to share it with all for free.

If you email me at [email protected]____.com I will send you a couple of pictures that help you understand the process better.

I've used this to overcome the negative aspects of MS.

Hope to hear from you. To "Making Things Great in 08".
Agape' D.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.D.

answers from Seattle on

I'm not a smoker, but my husband was/is and my sister in law was/is(I say was/is, because soking is like all adictions you are never cured). My husband used exercise to help him quit, now when he is stressed and frustrated he goes for a bike ride. My sister in law used Hypno-therapy to quit. But from watching them struggle with it, it's like all addictions, you have to change your life, so don't go to the stores where you buy, and change your routine around, and find some sort of support group, that you are acountable to, and do a masive cleaning of your house, clothes, and car, the smell can trigger desire.
Remember it's an addiction, and a habbit, so you have to make a life change.
You can do it!!!!!!
What a great gift to give your Family, More time with you :)

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.B.

answers from Richland on

Good for you. I don't actually have experience quitting, but you need to find something else to do just for you so you don't associate that with smoking. I'm an avid knitter and I've had people in my knitting groups using it to help stop smoking, partly as a distraction, but also something to do with their hands (some smokers have this problem), I've also had one knit to keep out of the chips as she put it, hard to eat or smoke when your hands are full. So find something you enjoy and use that as your me time, so you can get rid of the cigarettes. Good luck, I know you can make it through!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.G.

answers from Seattle on

Girlfriend, I have been there! Although I only smoked for 5 years, I did what you did, smoked outside away from my kids. I finally realized, like you, that I can't keep doing this and not expect dire consequences. It was hard, oh so hard, I slipped up many times. But I just kept at it. I didn't use any patches or gum. I just subtracted one smoke a day until I just had the first morning smoke. Sometimes I would slip up but I kept thinking of all the money I would save. I used all that $ to buy scrapbooking supplies. Whenever I would crave a smoke, I would get out the scrapbook stuff and design a page. You might find something equivalent that works for you. Don't get discouraged, just keep trying. You've already taken the first step. Don't think about how far you have to go, but how far you've come. My Grandpa is suffering the effects of smoking 40 years. He has COPD and his heart is only working at 25%. He's been in the hospital since Feb. Do you want to deprive your wonderful children of a healthy mother? Just know I'm rootin' for ya. Hang in there....

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

T.S.

answers from Yakima on

A.~
Smoking is so hard to quit! I feel your pain. My husband and I both smoked. I have been lucky enough to stop, like you said you were able to stop while pregnant and nursing. As soon as I found out I was pregnant I have been able to stay smoke free. My poor hubby on the other hand, has tried and tried and tried. Chantex did not work for him, neither did the patch, gum, cold turkey, whatever. He does smoke outside, and away from children. He's a teacher and coach, and doesn't like his kids to know that he smokes...so he hides it. He enjoys that taste of a ciggarette, plus like you it is "his time" away from everything. I wish I had something better to offer you, I just wanted to give you a thumbs up! You aren't alone out there...it's not an easy road to travel. You took a big step acknowledging your habit on Mamasource, and to yourself. I wish you all the best! Have you spoken with you physician? They may have alternatives for you to try also.
Best of luck!!!!
Tersea S.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.D.

answers from Portland on

A.,
I'm not going to bash you even though it sounds like you want it. I am a reformed smoker of over 20yrs. For me, I had been a casual smoker since I was 12yrs. I did it because of peer pressure. Then I dated a smoker and that made it worse. Later on I stopped cold turkey, but then took it up again. I don't know why, I just did. One day my good friend and I were driving down the road and I lit up. She said,"I am so disappointed in you." Well, that was all it took. I have never smoked since.
Seven years later I found my soul mate. He told me that if I was a smoker, he never would have dated me. Thank goodness I was no longer. We have been together for over 14yrs. and this Sept will have been married for 11yrs. with two children.
Two sad stories:
My mom has smoked all my life. She still smokes to this day, but has cut back tremendously. She suffers from asthma and has been told that she has emphysemia, yet she continues to smoke. She uses an inhaler for her asthma, but doesn't use it regularly because she can't afford to get refills. Now, if she didn't purchase that $4 pack of cigarettes, she could afford her medication. She continues to smoke because her sister does. My step dad says when her sister visits, they chain smoke until the ash tray is over flowing.
What I hate is that when we visit her (she lives out of state) she smells like cigarettes all the time. We have to leave our suitcases outside when we get home so that they can air out. Even if we come home with clean laundry, I have to wash them again because they smell. (She doesn't smoke in the house, only in the garage; which is a cloud of smoke, or outside.) When we get gifts in the mail from her, the box and packaging smells like smoke. I find it so disgusting that it makes me sick.
Second story:
My father-in-law is a reformed smoker of over 15-20 yrs. He doesn't have emphysemia, but he does have serious breathing problems. He gets out of breath walking from his room to the kitchen. The same when he bends over to tie his shoes or walks down the front steps to his car. Because of this he is glad that he quit smoking when he did. He also can't stand the smell of smokers. When you haven't smoked for years, you can smell a smoker from far away. What is sad is that he has two young grandchildren whom he loves to spend time with. When he attends their sporting events, he has to sit in a chair the entire time or sit in his car to watch. He can't get out in the yard to play ball with them or even push them on a swing at the park. He sits a lot because he can't breathe. When it is too hot or too cold, he wheezes and can't catch his breath.
I love both of these people very much and I can't stand the thought of either of them parting this world as I know they will some day. They are a vital part of our children's lives and because of their smoking, they can't spend the quality of time with our children that they want to because they can't breathe.

As a reformed smoker, I'm glad I quit. The older you get, the harder it is. I believe that a person becomes addicted to them similar to someone who has to have their double shot of espresso with a Kahlua kicker before breakfast.

For me, it took someone I cared about to express their disappointment in me.
For my best friends dad, it took smelling all the time for him to quit. (He started eating candy instead. It worked for him.)
For my father-in-law, it took him being tired of it.
For my mom, she struggles with the excuses. (I just wanted to calm my nerves or my sister came over and I just couldn't sit there and let her smoke alone.)

Only you can make the decision to quit and only you can do it. There is no magical cure or pill that can make it happen, ONLY YOU CAN MAKE IT SO!

Best wishes. Take care of you.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.C.

answers from Anchorage on

You need to replace smoking with something else that can be "me time". Get a hobby (knitting is my me time because it is easy to pick up and put down in short bursts), do 10 sit ups whenever you get the urge to smoke - anything to replace that feeling like you "deserve" a cigarette. Me time is wonderful and you do deserve it. You don't deserve to harm yourself, your children or your pocketbook during your me time. Would you ever commit suicide and leave your children behind? No. But smoking is the same thing - just slowly. You have to care about yourself enough to quit - it's about your children too of course, but you need to own it and do it for you.

"Trying" is failing with honor. Decide if you are a smoker or a non-smoker and be it.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

D.M.

answers from Anchorage on

The losenges helped me. I would pair it with a peppermint candy to deal with the awful taste. I also used a spray and herbal cigerettes. If it's the ME time, set up a place for ME time. Gather things in a lockable room or even closet like books, candles, headphones (must if you don't want to hear MOM), potpouri, ect. Or, you could have another baby! (hey it works right) My mother used shock thearpy, she would wear a rubber band around her wrist and snap it when she wanted to smoke.
It didn't work for my Mom heart attack did. She was 48 and survived. Then she got breast cancer a few years later. I was 20 when she died.
My longest quit was for 2 years. It's always a battle but so very worth it! I'm not smoking now and I intend for it to be permanent. Good luck!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

B.A.

answers from Augusta on

First of all, you may not be sending your children the message you think you're sending them about smoking. The person who convinced me, at the age of 5, to NEVER try a cigarette was my beloved aunt. I would go outside to keep her company when she smoked and she told me in no uncertain terms that I did NOT want to end up smoking cigarettes. Two years ago she died from an asthma attack :( Probably partially due to smoking, but I am forever grateful for the message she gave me.

I was more likely, not less, to listen to her about smoking's dangers because she knew what she was talking about. My parents, on the other hand, have never even tried cigarettes so what do they know? At least that was my reasoning at the time :)

Having never smoked, I can't help a whole lot with quitting tips, but having never smoked, I can tell you what I do for "me time." Hot baths, books, internet time, and cups of tea are my main ways of having time to myself. Taking walks is a great one also, but you might want to avoid outdoor alone times for a while since that's where I'm presuming you currently smoke.

Best wishes quitting! I know it's difficult (I've watched many loved ones quit or try to quit), but it's so worth it!

~B.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

D.C.

answers from Medford on

Oh man do I remember that feeling! I smoked for 15 years. My problem was that I really enjoyed smoking and didn't want to quit, but like you I knew I needed too. I'll tell you how I did it and I hope it helps you! I've been smoke free for over 10 years now. Everyone is different so this may not help at all...GOOD LUCK!!
I think you need to anaylize youself a little bit and deterine what kind of goal setter you are. Because quitting is a goal for sure. For example...I am horrible at setting long terms goals. When I would think OK, I'm going to quit forever it was like a death sentence or something...forever seemed impossible and I couldn't get past the first five minutes.
At the time, I hadn't figured this out...so I had many failures at quitting.
One day though, May of 1998, I had become ill. My throat was raw and I was nautious. I was walking into work with a cigarette in my hand trying to enjoy the last few drags I was going to get before I would have to go without for the next few hours. The problem was, because my throat was so sore I couldn't even enjoy it. It made me so mad I just put it out, disgusted...and went inside. My first break, 2 hours later I challenged myself to go through lunch. Two hours wasn't that bad so I did. After about 10 minutes past my break, I got back into whatever I was doing and forgot all about the craving. At lunch, I only took half a lunch and challenged myself to go another 2 hours. I did. When my last break came up, I just skipped it all together and challenged myself to last until the end of the work day. Finally, the end of the work day came and I realized I just went 9 hours without a cigarette and I was still alive! I also learned that when I buried myself into work it took my mind off of it.
So I went home and challenged myself to go another two hours. Since I hate starting over I just continued on that path for the rest of the day.
The next morning I woke up with a serious craving but challenged myself again. OK...I went one whole day..can I go another? That's not longterm AND it didn't scare me to death. The other thing I did was kept my cigarettes and lighter with me at all times. Just knowing I had them with me was a comfort but more importantly, knowing that I had them with me and wasn't using them gave me a feeling of accomplishment!!
Again, I HATE starting over on anything, it's my pet peeve, so after the second day I started believe I may actually be able to do this. The key for me was at first...two hours at a time, than one day at a time. Any time I felt the craving I would immediately get up and find something to do. Dusting, dishes, going for a short walk...whatever works go do it. It will take about 10 - 15 minutes and the craving will pass. If you can get through that short craving period you'll be fine..JUST STAY BUSY!
For me...I kept a pack of smokes with me for almost six months. If I knew I didn't have them handy I would have started again..I have no doubts. It was a weird kind of challenge I put myself through and I can't explain it but just knowing they were there if I needed them kept me from going crazy.
Also, I did have to make some changes in my daily life. For example...in the morning, I would drink buckets of coffee and probably have 6 or 7 cigarettes. I had to cut out all but one cup of coffee in the morning. I shortened my conversations on the phone because I always had a cigarette. I also ate less so that the cravng to smoke after a meal wasn't as bad so I ended up not putting on a lot of weight. I chewed gum A LOT and still do.
Now, I can drink all the coffee I want, don't worry about leaving a restaruant right away to have a smoke and can carry on a conversation as long as I want. Ocasionally, I'll crave a cigarette but it's very brief and I have never caved in.

When you're under the weather do you still have a strong craving for a cigarette? If not, maybe you should try to use the next time your sick to start quitting...just a thought it worked for me. In the meantime, just start giving yourself a limit of how many you can have during the day.

Good luck to you..but I know if I can do it anybody can....!!!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

L.O.

answers from Seattle on

You are so brave!!!! I really admire your honesty and your desire to quit smoking. I have never smoked so I can't speak from personal experience. But, have you read the quit smoking section in the book called You the Owner's Manual. Dr. Oz that is always on Oprah, is one of the authors. I read that book and thought that section had good avice on how to quit smoking.
I wish you the very best!!! You can do it!!!!!!!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.H.

answers from Anchorage on

I know the feeling, I am in my third day of quiting. I am a mother of 5 kids, with the youngest being 8. Get back on the Chantix. That's what I am using for the second time. Also, use your "Me Time" to read a couple of pages in a book, start a jigsaw puzzle, etc. Research all the great quit smoking sites on the internet and bookmark them, so that you can go back easily when you need encouragement. I like quitnet.com Good Luck, and remember, it will be hard, but you can quit. :)

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.A.

answers from Portland on

Cold Turkey--if you want to quit smoking that bad you don't need any help from anything else. I was a smoker before my first born and I started back after she was 3 months old. I was tired of smelling like smoke and I didn't want her to smell it on me. I didn't want my newborn to assiocate the smell of cigarettes to her mother so its something I wanted to do.....again. I put my mind to it-I grabbed my pack, I smoked them all and haven't picked up another one since. If your heart and mind are truly made up you shouldn't need help. Its breaking the habit thats gonna be bad. For example, after dinner, once you leave a store, first thing in the morning-you smoke a cigarette. Find something to do in the place of smoking at those times. Fiddle paper, take a piece of gum, a lifesaver, something that will get your mind off of the habit of smoking. If it helps leave your pack of cigarettes at home throughout the day and don't get a another pack. Force yourself to be with out them. If you know you are almost out wait till the morning to get yourself a new pack. Become less dependent on them and it should slowly turn in your favor. And above all of this-pray. Don't be afraid to ask the Lord for help, for strength. He is a mighty God and he can do wonders.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

K.B.

answers from Seattle on

My grandmother died of breast cancer and the cancer spread into her bones which is a very painful cancer.

Yes she was a smoker.

Check out your local Seventh-day Adventist church. You can look online or in the phone book, give them a call they have stop smoking seminars that really work!

Putting your family first is giving up the cigarettes, when my dad quit he switched to candy and gum , be careful he did end up at the dentist.

God bless you!

K.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.W.

answers from Portland on

I recommend a great hypnotist, Nancy wheeler. http://nancybwheeler.com/contact.html
she does cds/tapes to quit but even better are her sessions. Of course they cost a lot more but are so worth it.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.C.

answers from Anchorage on

Can you find something else for me time, like hide a way and have a cola? I was a smoker, and unable to quit even when I was pregnant, until I got sick. You have to do this for yourself, not anyone else. For your health, and so you can see your children grow up.

Blessed Be.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions