Personality issues...help please!

Hi,

I really need advice on how to get around the psychological aspects of stopping smoking & whether anyone else can relate.

All the usual advice from stop-smoking services tell you stuff like:

You'll be richer, healthier, smell better & all that gubbins. My problem is how do I address the issue that I just don't feel like 'me' without the fags?

I've read the Alan Carr Easyway & similar & appreciate intellectually that the sense of 'self' I'm on about is probably the nicotine addiction talking but I just can't escape from the utter misery I feel when I try to quit as I feel I'm somehow struck dumb (usually the life & soul of the party type), have no sense of humour, am not interested in anything anyone says or any aspect of life without cigs. The irony is when people say 'Just think after X months you'd be able to go on holiday with the money you've saved' etc I just think 'Why would I want to go on holiday/buy a fantastic dress/live 20 years longer' or whatever, in a world of utter misery where I can't be myself?

I've smoked for 26 years & currently get through 30-40 a day so want to stop for my health. I know that somewhere in the dim & distant past I must have had a sense of self & occasionally enjoyed myself b4 I was a smoker, but I can't dredge up that image with enough clarity to persuade me I'll ever be the same. If someone can give me hope in this aspect I'd be very grateful.

The other thing I struggle with is the concept of reward. At the moment I love the concept of the 'mini reward' of smoking. You know, I'll just do such & a thing & then have a fag...or someone tells you juicy gossip on the phone & you light up to enhance the enjoyment of the tale! The camaraderie of being with another smoker. That feeling that you & they are in your own secret club that's exclusive, cosy, concentrated, & 'apart'. The feeling that non-smokers can't possibly be enjoying a situation as much as you are. How on earth do you shake that off???

It doesn't help when you hear people who quit over 20 years ago say things like 'I could still fancy one now'. I feel so lost with it all...like it's a choice between killing my best friend or myself!

I don't feel any of the NHS quit smoking stuff deals with those really deep feelings.

Thanks for reading.

29 Replies

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  • Its pretty simple you've been doing something for a very long time in your life (13years old to 42 years old here). Nicotine is addictive like many drugs and has been compared to Cocaine, heroin, and alcohol when trying to quit. Its not part of you or a reward, its poison that you are a addicted too and the part of your mind that wants you to continue using keeps telling you that its a part of your life and that you can't live without it. The key to quitting is not listening to it. I smoked a cigarettes before I lost my virginity(how sad is that?) to me if feels like drinking a glass of water but it is not. Changing your way of thinking about smoking and your relationship to it is important. Thinking of a ciggy as a reward is not a good way to think about it. Anyways I hope this help ya. There are many links in people sig's. Check them out and read them. Utube has tons of stuff on what smoking does to ya. Find the one comparing a good set of lungs with a smokers set, that helped me .

  • Hi Talitha....yes I hear what you are saying ...I have been through the same thing and probably everyone who has given up smoking has:confused: I have no immediate answers....I read a lot ....anything I could find that reinforced how BAD smoking is for you and it is BAD .....a very nasty addiction......It does get better....I hardly think about ciggies much at all anymore and I feel better, look better (I think):D I definatly smell better, my load is a lot lighter when I go out and I even am starting to enjoy myself at partys a lot more these days, I have a lot more energy and I am certainly richer or was b4 I took the dog to the vets:rolleyes: It just takes time and it is most certainly worth the effort....the main thing though I think is that YOU have to be ready to do it.....I thought about it for about 4 months and put a lot of research into how I was gunna do it and I think it payed off in the end...hope this helped a bit and good luck....Cheers Kez.

  • Hi Talitha,

    that was a truly heartfelt first post.... you sound so much like me before I quit...... so hooked we simply can't see the truth. The truth being, just like Twiste said, you are an addict...... you live from fag to fag to feed your addiction and that is that. You may not be able to see that just now but I hope you will in time....... we all got fed up and that is why we quit.... lets face it, we all want to be non smokers.

    You've got to come to that realization first before you get to that final quit..... it's not a 'mini reward' but more like a sentence.... one that dictates your life every step of the way.

    I'm not gonna lie to you...... breaking those daily associations was hard, very hard but within a month or so I adapted and life turned back to normal...... in that time I learned that life is way cool even without a fag.

    Sure you've heard 'I fancy one even after 20 years' but it's nothing more than a passing thought..... nothing more...... if you want to quit, educate yourself about your addiction, try to understand it , and don't give it the power you've been giving it. This forum will support you in many ways...... so welcome ;)

  • Hi Talitha

    Yes you have spelt out exactly what I felt just one month ago.

    I loved smoking, had done for 35 years, loved it so much I built up to 35+ a day. But for the last few years I have felt the strain on my body. I always made excuses of course, that cough and breathlessness was an allergy never anything to do with fags.

    Two months ago I had a problem with my boobs and my surgeon said he would sort me out and even do my tummy but not if I was smoking, so I tried Champix as I had tried everything else before and failed, I was amazed that after one week I hated smoking so I gave up before my due date.

    That was four weeks ago today, I honestly would never have believed I could and I have not coughed or felt better in my life.

    I have had the op two weeks ago and I cant wait to recover so I can live again. I thought I would go straight back to smoking because what was the point of living without fags, but do you know I will just hang in there a little bit longer, they are in the cuboard now looking at me, but I had a good laugh last night and a glass or two of wine and it was good.

  • You're asking quite a lot of yourself, Talitha. It is important to find something that helps you not to smoke, for that is all you need to do initially at least. The rest can come later when you are up for it. I tell myself I am glad I don't need to have a cigarette. Every time I see someone standing outside smoking I remind myself that they need to do that and how glad I am that I don't. That is the only thing I focus on and it has got me to day 10

  • Hi Talitha,

    I can really understand what you mean. That was exectly how I felt. It was almost as if there would be a big hole in my existence and nothing would be the same without cigarettes. They were more than just 'my firneds' there were such an integrated part of my life that I wouldn't be 'me' without them.

    As a result I never really made any effort to give up as I couldn't see how things/life/everything could conitue as normal without them. Also I had this horror of what's the point giving up, if I'm still going to want one and have to spent all my life depriving myself.

    People on here have tried all sorts of way. I am now into my third week without a cigarette on Champix. I didn't really want to start taking them (or give up) but was sort of forced into the situation, so thought I'd give it a go.

    Champix works for me. You take it for up to two weeks while you continue smoking (and I did), then you're meant to get feelings of repulsion at the taste/smell of a cigarette (which I didn't), which encourages you to stop and the pills reduce the carvings.

    That was the best part for me. I just decided I'd see if I could go a day without a cigarette and promised myself that if at anytime I wanted one I could have one. (That way it didn't seem so drastic). Anyway, since then I've just not wanted one.

    It's a bit of a Catch 22 situation regarding what you mentioned, ie the fear of giving up. Until you actually go a week or so without, you don't know what life is like without cigarettes; but the fear of what life is like without them means you don't get round to trying to go a week or so without.

    For me the reality was no were near as bad as the prospect.

    You've nothing to lose by giving it a go. Let us know hwo you get one

    Sue

  • Gosh, thank you all so much for replying!

    I'm quite overwhelmed by such understanding & supportive responses! It's certainly given me hope that I won't necessarily turn into some bleak automaton & it's wonderfully reassuring to know other people felt like this as it's not something you hear being addressed in the usual anti-smoking mantras.

    Previous attempts to quit include:

    Gum: yuk, can't get on with it

    Patches: Pretty good & I can cope with them at the cinema/on flights etc...but usually can't wait to whizz them off & spark up at 1st opportunity! I may give them another chance...opinions seem to differ as to use the 24 hour ones or less (16 hour?). I know they gave me horrific nightmares so maybe the 'day' only ones would be better..though being a heavy smoker I worry they may not have enough nicotine??

    Zyban: Made me feel...well...psychotic really..hahaha. Was quite disturbed by that so abandoned after 5 days.

    Inhalator: Just tickles my throat so much I cough my guts up as if I'm on 60 a day.

    Cold turkey: Have tried this in all earnestness 1 time only. Kept very busy, ate mints etc. Did feel lacking in personality (I remember being at a friend's house & repeatedly dead-heading her aspidistra while she was talking because I was so agitated & fidgety!!)

    Kept it up for 1 & 1/2 weeks & then my dad died (stroke & heart attack in the same day). I immediately started again that night & haven't tried again since. That was in 2003.

    Since the UK pub ban I've smoked much more as I've felt panicky & persecuted & yes, I admit it...more 'rebellious'. I'm not exagerrating when I say that I've felt heartbroken since the ban. There was nothing better than a country stroll in winter that ended in a quaint olde worlde inn with a roaring log fire. I just can't go in 1 at all now.

    My goal is to improve my lung & artery health & to stop feeling like a social leper. At the moment I can't appreciate the other future benefits (money/smell nice etc) in a tangible way.

    Many people seem to report good things with Champix. Is it available in the UK?

    Do you quitters still feel as 'organised'? I can't imagine tackling important tasks/phone calls without that 'bolster' ciggie! I'm guessing this is also part of the addiction trickery loop but just wondering....

    I'd like some tips on relaxing into 'new company' post quitting if anyone has any. All my friends think of me as this confident & capable person but I feel so much of that is bound up with the smoking. My recent memories (certainly before the ban) are of feeling able to walk into any situation & deal with it with a laugh & a quip...with groups of smokers appearing much more 'instantly friendly' than non-smokers. Even now the clique of smokers outside pubs seem happy & giggly (if cold & pinched!) compared to the sterile feel of the 'inside righteous' crowd! Am I imagining this? If I walk into a pub now I just smell old gravy, overcooked veg & feel everyone is looking at me in that American Werewolf In London 'Slaughtered Lamb' way haha..& can't wait to get back outside to the 'human folk'.

    When I gave birth to my son (the only 9 months I didn't smoke in all these years!) hospitals still had smoking rooms & I remember that the happy & warm feeling there attracted all the non-smoking mums as they said it was so much 'happier' than in the day room! I can't decide if smokers are just happy people anyway...who fell into the addiction in order to 'bond' with other smokers...or whether it is actually the relaxing effects of nicotine making them friendlier! It's something I worry about...does anyone have a strategy there that replaces that 'instant' bond you get with other smokers in social situations?

    I just feel so drawn to other smokers (though admittedly their numbers are diminishing fast!)...I suppose it's an acceptance thing...a feeling that 'Hey, we're all fallible & unpretentious & better for it'. It was always more about that for me than ever being 'cool' as such, even back when I was 17.

    Sorry for waffling on! Thanks again.

  • Yes Talitha Just how I think and feel, in fact are you sure you arn't me. Champix you can get from your docs.

    I recently went to Portugal were there is a ban but being Portugal they ignore it and believe it or not from being a rebel I found myself outside because I could not stand the smell. I now know what non smokers felt like and it isnt nice, and if you truly look at those people outside in all weathers puffing away at the filthy weed you really dont want to be there.

    I bet you now think I hate that woman because 4 weeks ago I would have hated me too

  • Hi, Go talk to your doctor. Right now, make an appointment. Don't even think about it - just do it. We'll all worry about what you say later, but make that appointment.

    You've got a history of trying to give up on other methods, so ask for Champix. They are reluctant to prescribe it if you have a medical history of depression or suicidal tendencies, but other than that, apart from slight nausea and weird (but interesting dreams) I've not has a problem. You'll find all the info and support you need here, so .....have you made that call yet??

    I was you a month ago and still find it hard to believe that I have a life (and a nice one) without cigarettes. Don't want to sound evangelical, but once you get over the initial bit of not having a cigarette, you'll find you are exactly the same person - but better, ie you don't want to keep stressing about how you can fit in the next fag in someone else's house/car/no smoking area etc.

    Trust me - honest (I sound like a snake oil salesman), but it worked for me when I was frightened of even thinking of giving up let alone giving up because I thought my personality was integral to the cigarettes.

    We're all here for you - believe me, do understand what you're saying.

    Sue

  • LAS is a good place to be, however you get there. It took me an age to get my head around who I was too. I was even diagnosed as depressed. Some counselling sessions made me realise part of those feelings were down to the 'loss' of something that really did not deserve to be mourned. The person I have ended up becoming is most certainly more grumpy on occasions (but maybe thats my age!) but massively more self confident and positive about things. If you can beat the smokes you can conquer the world. Go for it! Whats the worst that can happen!!!!

  • Hello my love, I'm sorry you are so down at the moment but there is hope.

    I agree with what the others are saying except I will be slightly brutal here and say you will only do this if you (and you alone) really what to, you have to stop making excuses and bite the bullet (and I stress ONLY if you are ready). Unlike most I never gave up for heath or money, I've seen diseased lungs and I even lost a member of staff of lung cancer 3 years, even this did not want me to give up smoking.

    For me after 24 years I decided that was enough, I’ve had my fun and now my time is up! I like smoking, I have always fought for smokers rights and I miss smoking (only on day 2 of my quit day) but I am telling you now I will never smoke again and it's that frame of mind that will make me an ex smoker.

    Giving up is hard, very hard, it's uncomfortable but it's not painful, we may think we will die if we do not have a cigarette but we won’t.

    I'm on Champix and I have only tried to give up once and this is it, so I can not say if Champix is better than any other way but it really has helped me.

    I will never become that ranting ex smoker who tells everyone to give up, the choice is yours but I will promise you I (all of us) will support you if you do.

    I wish you all the luck in the world, let us know how you are doing.

    Christine xx

  • Hi..if you struggle just on the patches you can use another form of nrt as well if you are a heavy smoker.So you could use the patches then lozengers when things get really hairy!! I wish you all the luck in the world....u have started a great post because u have explained how we all felt when we first quit.

    I have quit before for 15 months and i did have an issue with how my personality changed and blamed it all on giving up the cigs.This time im more posative and im looking forward to meeting the real me now..cause u know this real me dont take no sxxt lololol

    Good luck

    xxxxxx:)

  • Hi Talitha

    What a fabulous post, you really summed up what we have all felt. Hope it has helped knowing you are not alone.

    Like you I have tried before and failed with various methods. But as they say "never quit quitting". This time I'm using Chapix and it really seems to be working for me. However, whatever method you choose get loads of support. This forum is great but there are laods of other things out there. My hubby has just attended his first NHS stop smoking session today and he got loads out of that, he likes the one to one support.

    Whatever you decide, good luck and remember not matter what we tell ourselves as smokers, given the chance to go back in time would we ever have started in the first place? ;)

    xx

  • can I help?

    Dear Talitha, I registered for this website because of your post. Since I quit smoking, 8 weeks today, I find strength reading of other peoples journeys through quitting smoking. I have a slightly different slant to the process of quitting smoking. It is my own blog. I invite you to read of my story. It might help. You said you wanted something different. Here it is.

    [URL="http://stumpsounder-quitsmoking.blogspot.com/

  • Hi Talitha,

    I think that your getting a lot of replies because you struck a cord with each and every one of us.

    We've all been there, felt the same, I know exactly what your talking about with the pub thing, but the simple truth is that if you want to give up, your going to have to go through some hard times to get there.

    Maybe you would have been a quitter now had your father not died, who knows, but no matter what happens in the future, if you really want to quit, you need strong resolve, and you have to admit your a nicotine addict and know that you can never touch another ciggie ever again, because just like me, one will lead to more.

    I know that sounds a lot of tosh admitting your a junkie like an drug addict or alcoholic, I used to think the same, but I found that once I knew the truth, my resolve to quit was stronger.

    Does it get better? Read the post here, including mine of people a few months in. Breathing like a normal person, more energy, more money etc

    Does it get easier? Again, it sure does. I'll admit that this week just gone, i've quite fancied a ciggie, im not craving one, im just going through a bit of a rough time dealing with the liquidation of my business. Its like you might think "oh, I fancy a cup of tea now" but it passes very quickly.

    How can you cope without ciggies? Id say how can you get anything done when at the first sign of trouble you suck your ciggie like a baby sucks a dummy? Trust me, you get far more done as a non-smoker.

    Can you be life and soul of the party without fags? Hmmm, yup, your talking to one. :-)

    What about my little reward my friend the smoke? Instead of smoking ciggies as your reward, why not instead try sticking your head down by a car exhaust pipe and inhaling that instead? No? but you do that already in a convenient handy to carry packet!

    Etc Etc, I could go on like them boring old ex smokers do, you know the ones but at the end of the day, you have to choose life or smoking. Just the other day, I saw a couple of ladies in their late 50's wheeling themselves around with zimmer frames, coughing their guts up, their faces wrinkled with all the smoking they have done. Poor women I thought to myself, glad i gave up when I did.

    It won't be easy to start with, you will have to fight some personal battles and change lifestyle habits, but look at all of us, it can be done. We came out with the same BS reasons not to quit, we all loved our little treat, I for one loved getting pissed up and smoking 40 fags whilst doing it, we all smoked from 10-30 years or so, but we all did it. Were not supermen, or anything special, were all nicotine addicts who have beaten our addiction.

    I read that champix does the trick, why not give that a try?

    Oh, and lastly, to the guy who kept his virgin woman waiting before he had sex, I used to always cram a quick fag in before hitting the bedroom, how sad is that?

  • Very well said Amsie. and uhmmmm no making fun of my virginity story its not allowed LOL

  • lol, no worries mate :-)

  • Thanks everyone!

    It's been a hectic few days but I've been snatching every spare moment to look through these replies & I feel my resolve is strengthening with all your stories.

    I've decided on Saturday I'm going to start the process by using my choc-shock jar (little gizmo poss from Firebox type site) that gives you a little electric shock if you try & open it before the time you set. I've used it before to cut down & it's been great. Sposd to stop you eating chocolate but thankfully I'm not addicted to that....yet.. haha!

    I'll set it for increasing amounts of time, with an initial goal of getting down from 40 to 20 over next week. I'll tell you how I'm doing if that's OK.

    The brilliant thing is I know I'm going to do that because I'm posting here & want to be honest...whereas if I just said it to myself it would be easy to lapse & accidentally on purpose forget to do it. If I made a big thing of telling my family I know I'd be interrogated as to my progress..which would just make me feel too pressurised. Thanks so very much for your support. Feeling very positive.

  • Stumpsounder......wow!

    I'm sitting here a blubbering like a baby after reading your blog! It struck such a nerve. You've done so amazingly well. Please keep on updating it. If you can do it then I feel I must be able to after all. The 7-7-7 thing is encouraging. I can't wait to see how you're doing in February. I've cut & paste a lot of the things you said (hope you don't mind!) & am going to stick them on a card to carry in my bag for inspiration!

    Thank you

  • Hi Talitha,

    you sound like your serious that you want to quit, so thats good. Personally I never found cutting down worked for me, i'd cut down to ten a day which worked for a day or two, then id be visiting the garage twice a day to buy 2 x 10 ciggies, kidding myself that I had cut down.

    Id be looking at champix if I was you, but if you decide to go another route, I recommend cold turkey. Just get 3 days out your way, then your over the worst!!! Backup with an electronic ciggie and lots of PMA and job done!

    3 rough days for a lifetime of freedom from ciggies, easy huh?

    Paul

  • Hi,

    I've neverd of the 'choc-box' method of quitting, but whichever you choose, Good luck. You sound really positive, so I think it's a good time to give it a serious go.

    I agree with amsie - cutting down doesn't seem to get you there in the end. It's just too easy to creep back up - and you have to ask yourself, do you want to be a smoker who's cut down? or a non-smoker? If the latter then you are going to have to bite the bullet sometime.

    I think you should consider Champix. With it, you continue smoking until you are ready to quit. In most cases, people have seriously cut down their smoking during this time, not because they felt they 'ought to' but because they just didn't want a cigarette. And then the 'quit' seems less of an event. Also it helps signficiantly with the cravings.

    There are many other forms (Cold turkey, patches, e-cigs etc etc) which I'm sure other people would be happy to tell you about.

    Whichever route you go down, good luck and keep us up-dated often.

    Sue

  • Shockolate vault

    Here's a link to that

    gadgetsuk.com/Shockolate-va...

    I'm not doing the old 'cutting down instead of quitting' chestnut, but feel it will be easier to stop from a position of 10-20 a day than 40. You know when people advise you to change behaviours that involve smoking? Well I don't have any at present haha. Every aspect of my day/night involves smoking except sleeping, showering & swimming!

    I'm feeling very optimistic about tomorrow so crossing my fingers & toes in readiness.

  • Tried cutting down for 20 years thats how I got from 20 a day to 40. Only thing that worked for me was Champix

  • 20 today instead of 40

    Quite pleased. Have kept very very busy. My only worries about Champix are that I have a history of depression so don't think I'd get them. Zyban also had a bad effect on me.

    My shockovault is doing its bit. I set the timer for longer each time. It was amazing quite how long 10 minutes can seem at times though! I'm intending to quit cold turkey once I get down to 10 over the course of the next 2 weeks.

  • Hi Talitha, I just read your first post and can totally relate to what you said in it.

    I've been giving up(yes, on and off, as everybody knows:rolleyes:)) for over a year. I used to be a 40 a day smoker too.I never believed i would even wat to give up. Whilst i haven't yet been 100% successful, what really has happened you will be pleased to know ,is that you very quickly lose the feeling of not being able to do anything without a fag. Currently you have an addicted brain and part of addiction is the belief you "can't live without" your substance.

    Approaching it from where you are, as a still addicted heavy smoker it looks dead scary. But have faith your thoughts will change quickly, when you're brain stops being poisoned by chemicals. It's the same thing as seeing those programmes about heroin addicts, where they're going "I love heroin, I need it, I can't live without it" and we sit there in horror urging them to get down to rehab before they die. They are scared they can't do it, in addiction the drug becomes your life and part of who you are. While you're still taking a substance it's hard to picture life without it.

    I used to believe i couldn't "enjoy" certain things without a ciggie. I thought (and I'm sure some of my earlier posts on here prove this) that there was no point saving up all this money, as i wouldn't enjoy myself when i got there- because i couldn't smoke. How mad- that a fag is more enjoyable than a holiday! Smoking isn't really enjoyable we just think it is cos we're addicted and in withdrawal.

    You wern't born with a cigarette, and you enjoyed yourself when you were a kid without them. You only think you need them!

    When i have my lapses , cigarettes just don't do anything for me now, all they do is make me want one again very quickly. They taste really foul and smell revolting (so weird i didn't notice that when i smoked)

    You may have a bit of a down period, grief like you've lost a friend sorta thing, but i absolutely promise that one day you'll realise there is nothing at all to miss.

    :cool:

  • Hi Talitha

    I have suffered with depressions many times and recently but i am on champix and feel fine. Obviously i a little more moody than usual but that has to be down to quitting.

    I would definately give it ago.

    I so understand all the things that you have been saying like i actually enjoyed the outcast side of smoking, feeling like im the only naughty one and that is something i have to try to get my head round, including if im at a metting or course/conference how will i get to speak to anyone or meet anyone if i dont smoke. As you say smokers have an instant bond and that is your friends for the day. How do you deal with this is a none smoker, it is almost as if all my confidence has gone as well. I suppose its still early days for me as this is how i have lived and been for 22 years and now it all has to change and i have to get used to a whole new life (which i know is for the better)

    Keep posting and let us know how your doing.

    Jane

  • Thanks for latest replies

    Down to 19 today. Made myself extra busy on 2 occasions I would have automatically had a smoke. After dinner & after a stressful event (nothing earth shattering...but I knocked the gas hob knob on by accident & gassed the household while I had an hour's sleep!! Took ages to clear after opening all windows & doors so I couldn't spark up if I wanted to without possible KABOOM! haha). When it was safe I was soooo desperate for 1 but fought off the urge.

    Thanks for the latest comments. It's so encouraging hearing other people's stories. The instant bond thing is such a poser. If you sat with a group of strangers & offered them some mints it wouldn't have the same effect at all would it? They'd probably tag you as a care in the community case.

    I was pondering before on how would it be if all the board users met up? On the one hand you'd think 'Great...I can meet all these kindred spirits!' but on the other hand the urge to smoke would be overwhelming (to some of us at least). I knew I was becoming a real nicotine addict when, wherever I went, I'd immediately scan the place for ashtrays. Of course this was back in the days when that was a possibility! One of the most stressful times for me was back in 2001 when we went to Arizona. After the long flight (around 12 hours) the realisation you couldn't smoke in Los Angeles Airport was hideous (at that time they still had an 'area' in Manchester Airport). We had a wait until the connecting flight to Phoenix & it was pure torture. My son then accidentally ran over my heel with the heavy luggage trolley & I just flipped & fled out of the terminal in floods of tears! I felt such a nicotine dependent twerp but so angry & 'persecuted' at the same time. I looked around at all these calm 'never been a smoker' types & thought If I said 'Look, I haven't had a fag for 12 hours' they'd be thinking 'Your point?' with patronisingly puzzled frowns. Outside LAX I lit up & was approached by some obvious conmen/hustler types asking questions but I just didn't care. I snapped a curt 'Don't mess' type answer but didn't move. Nothing was gonna stop me having that fag! I thought 'I'll fight them off if I have to!' which was so crazily irresponsible now I look back on it. That my 1st experience of America should be so dominated by addiction shows just how powerful that grip is.

    I can't wait until the clear headed day I genuinely believe it doesn't matter any more, & the quitter posts here are making me think that will be a reality, which is fantastic.

  • Another post that really struck a chord...... I remember those days when I looked at non smokers and thought 'wow, to not have to worry..... fek it, when/where can I have my fag'........ really, nothing else ever mattered but that opportunity to have one.

    I know you are still trying to figure out how this will all work for you, Talitha......... I waited for that moment of realization to come for so long...... and it never came. In order to be a non smoker, I had to smoke that final cigarette, suffer for a while, and hope it would get better. It did, lucky for me.

    the quitter posts here are making me think that will be a reality, which is fantastic.

    Yeah, Talitha, it is a reality and it is a really good reality. That coming from a previously confirmed smoker.

    You are getting into the right frame of mind............ good work! You'll be fine, okay :)

  • :)

    Hiya,

    I have gone through a very similar process and it is hard, I have given up ciggarttes, alchohol, sugar and a few other vices this last year. This is a far cry from the party animal that i used to be.

    I have felt lost without my crutches and like I don't know who I am anymore at points, and also remorse at not being able to be 'bad' anymore. I have at points felt like i didn't want to be a 'salad eating' bore and have felt like a part of me is gone and here is what i can say that may help you...

    The feeling that you are not the same and do not enjoy life without ciggies is simply addiction withdrwal sometimes psychological sometimes phisical, this does pass with time and stop feeling that way, you just have to hang in there and keep reinforcing the reasons why you quit, maybe read allen carr again if the doubts are seriously starting to re-surface.

    The rest of the identity crisis is due to the fact that you have let go of something that you used to identify yourself with, it is entirely natural that you go through somekind of transition. Smokers see themselves as being in some kind of club, if everyone around you is smoking you all feel better about it and have a whole load of shared ideas and associations that you take on without even knowing about it, by joining the 'club', heroin addicts and alcholoics and any people who engage in self destructive behaviours do this, it helps to justify the behaviour that you know is bad for you. The fact is non-smokers are no worse off then smokers and you are nodifferent, there is nothing magical about the ciggarette that makes you who you are, and had you never smoked you would still have the same sence of humour, confidence and sparkiness that you had as a smoker. let the addiction wear off, let go of smoker 'club' conditioning and get on with your life, really it is exactly the same only now you are richer and healthier and not caught in the trap.

    :)

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