One thing that I really appreciate about living in the US is the strict smoking laws. There will be no restaurant or club that will greet you with a noseful of “second hand cigarette smoke” when you walk through the door. It’s wonderful!
I have a very profound aversion to cigarettes.
My Mom used to be a chain-smoker when I was little. She would have her first cigarette before breakfast already and I just despised it. Research suggests that children of smokers are much more likely to become smokers themselves. For me (and my sister) my Mom’s smoking had the opposite effect. I hated cigarettes. I hated cigarettes so much thatÂ I have not once touched a cigarette in my life! No, I didn’tÂ even try once when I was a teenager and everyone else thought it was cool to smoke.
Thankfully, my Mom stopped smoking many, many years ago. She decided one night at a birthday party with friends that she didn’t want to smoke anymore. Just like that. I had to think about what a strong person she has been when I heard on a random radio program the other day that 90% of smokers who try to quit do not succeed. But my Mom did. She hasn’t touched a cigarette in what I believe has been 22 years. I am so, so proud of her.
Yes, she did gain some weight after she quit (one of the many reasons, I believe, why people have a hard time quitting), but to be honest, I minded the the a cigarette in her hand much more than a few more pounds on the scale.
My sister and I have been on a mission since we were kids on how we could get family members to stop smoking. We somehow convinced our Granddad and our great-aunt to stop smoking, even though their favorite excuse had been for the longest time that they were “already too old to stop”.
We begged and pleaded with my aunt (who has been a heavy smoker ever since we can remember) that we would do this and that if she stopped smoking. To no avail. When my sister was 17,Â she even offered to pay for a one week vacation for my aunt (who hadn’t been on vacation for a long time) if she stopped smoking. It didn’t work. She lives on a very tight budget and she keeps saying that cigarettes are the only “luxury” that she has.
Come on. I mean, seriously, cigarettes are aÂ ‘luxury’?? Cigarettes are bad for your health, they make you age faster and the smell is disgusting. Why wouldn’t she want to spend her hard-earned money on something else?
I can only hope that my cousin has developed the same aversion as me and my sister and will never pick up a cigarette ever!
Like I said in one of my earlier posts, I don’t think I have an addictive personality and maybe therefore I cannot understand what it’s like to smoke and not be able or willing to stop.
I respect people’s decision to smoke and I have gotten a lot more “passive” when it comes to convincing someone to quit – but if you’re my friend and you smoke, you know now where I stand.
I won’t get in your face about your smoking, but please know that I am only concerned about your health and that I care about you.