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Old 09-30-2013, 02:27 PM   #1
DizBelle
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A question for the smokers.....

What made you pick up and smoke that first cigarette? And what made you pick up the second and continue to become a smoker?
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Old 09-30-2013, 02:44 PM   #2
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the first time: 16, in high school at a school that had a smoking area. All of my friends hung out at break and lunch in the smoking area. Just started to make sure I fit in. Dumb thing is, I already fit in without smoking. Just a dumb teen.

Quit for 2 years and started again: started having extreme anxiety and nervousness. Felt like I "needed" a cigarette. Smoking did not make it go away medication did, but still smoking.
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Old 09-30-2013, 02:45 PM   #3
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I'm an ex-smoker, quit almost 15 years ago now, but I remember picking up that first cigarette so clearly . . .

I was 15 and it felt like all my friends smoked. In hindsight, almost none of them did, but my "best" friend, who was a year older and had a car, did smoke and if I'm being honest with myself, I picked up that first cigarette because I wanted her to think I was cool. I remember asking her if I could try one, she laughed and said I'd cough up a lung (and then did not share). I was always a stubborn child, so when I was home later that evening, I snuck a cigarette out of my visiting grandmother's pack and went into our crawl space basement to try smoking it. I didn't cough once and was so proud!!! Such a demented thing to be proud of . . . anyway, the next day I convinced my friend to share a cigarette with me and proudly smoked away like an expert. It's so hard now, to look back and think about that moment and how dumb that was.

I kept smoking because it was easier. Smoking is social, I wanted to be hanging out. And smoke of others didn't seem to bother me as much if I was smoking too. So I kept smoking.

I finally quit at 21, after almost 6 years of smoking. I just quietly decided I was done and then wondered how long it would take my friends to notice I wasn't smoking. That challenge helped me through the first few days -- it took them over a WEEK to notice I was hanging out with them, but not smoking too. By that time, I'd gotten over the hard part and it seemed stupid to start again. I was acutely aware of how relatively easy it was for me to quit and was wise enough by then not to start back. The cravings still came though. Honestly, sometimes they still do. I see someone smoking a pack of Camels, my old brand, and I think on it nostalgically. But the smell makes me nauseous now, so I know I'll never be a smoker again.
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Old 09-30-2013, 03:21 PM   #4
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I think these are great questions. I never smoked, never wanted to, and hated it when my parents did (thankfully they quit when I was still young). Every person I know who has ever smoked, though, started as a teen. I don't know anyone who started as an adult. Am curious to see if anyone here started as an adult.

Eta: Actually, I sort of do know of one person who started smoking as an adult. my boyfriend in college was the youngest of 6 kids, and his dad had been in world war 2. If I'm remembering correctly, cigarettes came as part of a red cross care package.
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Old 09-30-2013, 06:10 PM   #5
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I started when I was a dumb 15 year old to fit in, my mom smokes so she never caught on and by the time I was 18 I smoked almost 2 packs a day. I quit when I was 23, but did the smoke when I'm out drinking and socializing thing for a while. Then I got pregnant and quit smoking and drinking and haven't since. It's funny when I was pregnant with DS I could smell a smoker 20 feet away and it would turn my stomach so I'm pretty sure I won't ever pick it back up again knowing how much the smell sticks to everything.
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Old 09-30-2013, 06:26 PM   #6
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I started at 14, because i was the only friend that didn't. I became a "smoker" because i liked the appetite suppressant. That is the main reason i smoked- because at that age in my mind it was better than eating. My senior year i survived on dr. pepper and Marlboro Reds.

I quit almost 11 years ago when my oldest was born, and I still miss it. I tried once about 2 years after I quit. I was having a really stressful day and Thought a smoke might help me so I stopped at 7/11 and bought a pack and a lighter... took one drag and got so sick to my stomach I never tried again. But I'm a weird ex-smoker- I love second hand smoke! I will take a couple deep breaths walking past the Designated Smoking Areas.
And I hate militant ex-smokers. lol.
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Old 09-30-2013, 06:35 PM   #7
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I tried it because friends were doing it and I liked it! I never coughed or thought that it was bad but enjoyed it immensely right away.

I was a social smoker for years but decided to quit when they became so expensive and I wanted to have a child. Luckily I never got hooked for some reason.
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Old 09-30-2013, 06:42 PM   #8
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I started the summer between 6th and 7th grade so about 12 years old? Everyone in middle school was smoking in the early 70s or so it seemed. Ohhh, the things we did then and ohhhh what I'd do to my kids if I caught them doing the same things at that age By the time I was in high school I was smoking a pack a day, in my 30s I was up to 10 packs a week (I bought a carton every Saturday morning when I went grocery shopping) and sometimes more.

I quit 15 years ago this Thanksgiving Day. I had tried several times but finally went cold turkey, no pun intended , when the doctor said he thought DD's ear infections were due to second hand smoke. I've never looked back.

BUT, DD's dad (36 then) who gave me a hard time the entire time we dated/lived together about "kissing an ashtray", "spending grocery money" and "making the kids sick" took up smoking about six months after we split up because he started dating some whackadoodle who was a heavy smoker (or so I figure that's the reason). He's now completely hooked and smokes a pack a day. My sister (46 then) started smoking five years ago and also smokes a pack a day,although just last week she started wearing a patch.

WHO THE HECK starts smoking as an adult Well, there's two close people in my family. I just can't fathom how that happens. Cigarettes in MA are now $10/pack, that's a car payment every month. I paid $20/week for my carton in 1998. Still alot of money but it wasn't breaking the bank like today. Peer pressure in middle age Its so NOT PC to smoke anymore, they make it as hard as they can here in Massachusetts, why bother? When I smoked, it seemed everyone smoked, it was almost "normal".
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Old 09-30-2013, 06:50 PM   #9
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I don't smoke, but my dad and fil both were non-smokers until they went into the military. Both said they started because cigarettes were included in their rations, and in care packages from the Red Cross.
As my dad put it, when people are shooting at you, and throwing hand grenades at you, and dropping bombs on you, you don't worry too much about the long term health impact of something you are doing.
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Old 09-30-2013, 06:55 PM   #10
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My cousin and I decided to try a cigarette. Our moms caught us and made us smoke a whole cigarette. We coughed and choked.

Later, all of my friends smoked when we went out and so did I.

Now, I smoke about 5/day because I like it.
In the past, I stopped when I wanted to get pregnant and then didn't start again for about 20 years. My doctor told me 5/day is better than the scripts women want to relax. He also told me to tell my kids that I'll live to be at least 98 because all of my numbers are good. He sent me to a cardiologist for a work up because I'm 55. That doctor said my ateries are as clean as those of an infant.
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:00 PM   #11
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I started when I was sixteen, most of the group I hung out with smoked so I wanted to fit in. I smoked til I was 26, then quit for 10 years. When I was 36, I was having a few drinks with a friend that smoked, smoked a couple of hers, then bought my own pack and haven't stopped since. I try once in awhile, but the longest I've been able to hold out is 2 months.
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:23 PM   #12
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PatsGirl:

My DH quit after 40 some odd years b/c I developed chronic bronchitis. It was awesome that you quit for your daughter. My parents both smoked heavily I too suffered from horrible earaches. The end result for me was partial hearing loss. You gave your Dd the gift of continued hearing.

I'm a Grandmother now in my time they didn't know about the effects of second hand smoke.

Today I'm surprised as you are about adults starting to smoke. Go figure!
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:35 PM   #13
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I mirror someone else's story, started at around 12. I worked a summer job everyone was 16 and older, they all smoked so I started. Both of my parents smoked and my father started buying my cigarettes for me at 15 or so which is when I became around a pack a day smoker. My wife and I still smoke though not in house since we started having kids. Every winter I figure we will quit but not yet.
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:51 PM   #14
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I am a former smoker.

I smoked my first cigarette when I was about 9 because my mom did and it was available. From 9 to 14 I smoked occasionally. Not enough that my mom would miss any cigarettes. I really started smoking at 14 because my high school friends did. I enjoyed it. A lot. I smoked for 12 years, about two packs a day. I stopped for many reasons. It's been about 11 years now but I still want one every single day and think about it often. I know if I ever take another drag, I won't be able to stop.
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Old 10-01-2013, 02:39 AM   #15
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I smoked a few cigarettes in high school because I wanted to be popular, and I thought it was cool. I was a little insecure about myself at 15.Then one day a popular guy came up to me and said "Hey, I saw you smoking yesterday. Don't let it become a habit." I never lit up again.
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