Heavy Nicotine Addiction

Hi all.

i've been smoking for 25 years. i'm 12 years clean & sober from addiction/alcoholism. i used to do a lot of drinking & drug taking. i also went through the mental health system & experienced a lot in the way of extreme/non-ordinary states, being labelled with psychosis. i have used the principles of the 12 steps, & worked through them formally in the past. But have not done an NA/AA meeting for a number of years, as i started to really struggle with it all. i continue to practise spirituality in my life.

i am strong around everything else i used to do, but tobacco has been incredibly hard to stop. i have tried everything, hypnotism, Alan Carr course, books, all the NRT's, the smoke stop service 7 times, all sorts. i have tried using the 12 steps around smoking as well, but still haven't been able to stop. There are no nicotine anon meetings near to me.

i do feel that i need a lot of help & support to stop, & smoking has been one of my main coping mechanisms.

i do want to stop - i just feel so addicted to it.

9 Replies

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  • Hello Heart, and a big welcome from me to the forum :)

    I can only take my hat off to you for managing to overcome drug and alcohol addiction as well as deal with chronic mental health issues. That shows incredible strength and commitment. Perhaps the difficulty with quitting the fags is that you feel (subconsciously maybe) that you have to have something and nicotine is all that is left. If so, breaking that association (nicotine = pleasure/reward) might be the key to it all.

    You've certainly tried just about everything but there are many, many people on the forum who have had multiple quit attempts before finding whatever it takes to make the Final Quit stick. That light-bulb moment seems to come to us all eventually and when it does, whilst quitting doesn't become easy, it certainly becomes doable.

    Perhaps peer support from the forum will be what you need to make it happen for you. One thing is for sure- you'll find tons of support, understanding, ideas, help and companionship here so you're definitely in the right place.

    Do you have any plans currently for what method are going to use to tackle this or when you will start?

  • Hi there and welcome to the forum! I too have struggled with previous quits - had tried everything. This time I used an electronic cigarette and am now a few weeks short of a year quit - my longest quit ever (and my last). E cigs don't agree with everyone but it worked for me and I managed to give it up at the right time for me (after about 5 months). I used it as a form of NRT as I wasn't confident enough to try cold turkey!!

    Whatever method you choose, this forum is great and the people are really supportive!

    Best of luck

    Sarah

  • Thanks for the replies.

    I can only take my hat off to you for managing to overcome drug and alcohol addiction as well as deal with chronic mental health issues. That shows incredible strength and commitment. Perhaps the difficulty with quitting the fags is that you feel (subconsciously maybe) that you have to have something and nicotine is all that is left. If so, breaking that association (nicotine = pleasure/reward) might be the key to it all.

    Thanks, i do feel that i have made massive progress with everything. Yes, it feels so ingrained & entrenched. i do & don't want to stop - a part of me enjoys it all & a part of me wants to be free of it all. i know that i need to really want to stop, & be motivated & committed to that end.

    Perhaps peer support from the forum will be what you need to make it happen for you. One thing is for sure- you'll find tons of support, understanding, ideas, help and companionship here so you're definitely in the right place.

    Do you have any plans currently for what method are going to use to tackle this or when you will start?

    i do feel that i need a lot of support, yes. i'm not sure what to do? Maybe go see the GP again initially. i had planned on trying to stop on Monday, but just don't think i'll be able to without some kind of NRT & support.

    @ Sarah - i don't really get on well with the e-cigs, but glad that it worked for you.

    @ Debbieh - One of the difficulties is that there has always been a lot of stress in my life, & it can be very hard to manage. Very complex & in depth dynamics with family, & overall circumstances.

    Thanks again for your replies.

  • Hello and welcome....:)

    I hope Max takes you under his wing as if anyone can help you he can.....:)

    And this forum......post read rant read post read read........it's all here....good luck.x

  • Hello Heart and welcome to the forum.

    Wishing you all the best :)

  • Hello Heart,

    I am also recovering from an alcohol addiction. Been clean almost 4 months now and have just decided now to tackle quitting the cigarettes. I think it may be helpful for you if you can use some of the same tools that keep you from drinking. Imo, it is a similar problem just different demon.

    I use AVRT and it works really well for me. Not sure if you are familiar? Anyway, this is the first step now isn't it. You can do this! Stay close to the site and read all that you can. Advise is free and plentiful lol. The people are the absolute best and will support your efforts as much and as often as you need.

    Welcome!! ;)

    ~S

  • Hya my lovely. And welcome.

    It's so lovely of you to open up on this forum well done.

    We have a son that has had to over come many difficulties including drink and drugs, I remember saying to him, surely you can quit smoking, you have managed to deal with so much. His reply was, it's like the last thing in life that is bad, and I'm scared to let go.

    Like it was ok to hang on to his past , and not to move forward, just in case you reach happiness, does that make sense.

    I look forward to your posts, it's ok to let go of smoking, it's a good thing.

    You can do this,

    Take care my lovely.

  • Hi Heart

    I don't feel experienced enough to give advice as I'm still in the early days of quitting (day 5) but I can share what's happened so far.

    Patches/gum/e-cigs, they did nothing for me I carried on smoking on them. After a particularly nasty chest infection I begged the smoking clinic at the chemist for 'one more chance' this time I'm on Champix. As the quit day got nearer and nearer I smoked more and more (you can continue to smoke until day 8 - day 14 on champix) and got more anxious ! Sunday night I put my last cigarette out and laid in bed having panic attacks at the thought of not having a cigarette in the morning.

    I took one hour at a time - still having panic attacks and then at 10.30 at work I found this forum. I'm not out of the woods yet but I really don't want to go back.

    Good luck, as others said keep posting here when are ready to quit.

  • Hi Heart,

    Welcome to the forum, wishing you every success in your quit xx

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