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Would you have chosen to smoke if you knew how hard it would be to stop ?

I can still remember smoking my first cig at 16 with my best friend (who had been smoking a while!!) & thinking that I could give up whenever I wanted because it really wouldn't be that hard !! 39 years later & this is the longest I've managed without a cig in nearly all that time (did a year many moons ago,went out,had a couple too many & the rest is history) I absolutely KNOW that if I'd realised then just how much smoking was going to cost me in terms of health and wealth and if I'd realised just how hard it was going to be to stop I wouldn't have smoked that first cigarette.Would you have chosen to smoke if you'd known all the risks & realised how hard it would be to stop ?

17 Replies

Certainly not! Although I started when I was 15 I was secondhand smoking from birth. I had dangerously acute bronchitis when I was 8 but it didn't stop my parents smoking. I don't blame them, everybody smoked back then. When I was a kid I hated it with a vengeance and swore I never would. But with the encouragement of mates, films, the TV....it was just what you did. The Big Tobacco have had their piece of me!


i started smoking at 15 and come from a long line of smokers parents grandparents and great grandparents. next month i have managed a year without smoking ok had a couple of hicups along the way. what truly scared me was watching my mum die of lung cancer she died in October. Lucky for me i haven't had any health problems. i have 3 daughters and only one smokes .


I started when I was 18, I was told by workmates that i didn't know what i was missing every lunch time so I gave it a go :o(


Hi Tracey

Sorry about your mum. It's the worst thing seeing people you love most suffer. I lost my mum to breast cancer when she was 59 and my dad died 6 years later of some mystery illness. She never gave up smoking. My dad did and I wish he was here to see me doing the same. He said I was a mug for not giving up.

I just want to say keep strong and it's true what they say about time being a healer.


I honestly think it would be yes. Hindsight is a wonderful thing and I'm sure there are many things we'd rather we hadn't done in our younger years but you can't put an old head on young shoulders, part of youth is to think you are invincible and that will never change.


Worryingly I don't think I made the decision to start. It was a few behind the bike sheds every couple of days and it snowballed so fast. And if someone had tried to intervene and tell me how bad it'll be in the future, I probably would have been too cocky and refused to believe that I couldn't stop anytime I wanted


Hi everyone :)

Would you believe I can remember at 5 years of age going to the corner store with my 7 year old brother and we would buy a packet of 5 plus a box of matches. We would take them up to the ground behind the kindergarten, smoke 2 each then burn the last one along with the matches!!! We told the shop owner they were for our mother!! The silly thing is that neither of our parents have ever smoked! We had a babysitter/house cleaner who used to smoke so I guess we got the idea from her!

Also my grandfather and father were pharmacists. I used to work in their shops on a Saturday morning when I was very young and we used to sell cigarettes. Grandfather used to tell me they were beneficial to asthma sufferers because it regulated their breathing. Oh good grief!!!!!

I began to seriously smoke however when I was 14 or 15 and like you snowdrop thought I could stop whenever I felt like it. Oh dear :/

No......if I'd known what I know now I would never have started :(

Have a happy day everyone




Wow everyone started a lot younger than me, i was old enough to know better i guess! I hated my parents smoking with a passion, then at 20 after a nasty break up and the onset of going clubbing i had the occasional one, then a few months later after a terrible day at work, i went and bought 10 silk cut ultra lights.......and the rest is history :(

I def would say NO to the girl who offered me that 1st smoke in the club!


My answer would definitely be no, started smoking at school with friends who have all given up since. My mother smoked along with her friends so I kind of got used to being within a smoky environment I suppose, everyone smoked in those days but boy oh boy if only I had known how many health issues I would have because of this addiction I would never have started and you know what if it hadn't been for my heart attack in October last year I would probably still be smoking too absolutely loved it, how bad is that?


How you doing Kaprin?


Hello my friend very much up and down to be honest, still not smoking off the patches now but still using some gum daily, back at work but can feel myself getting really stressed and that damn cough won't go away either so not sleeping well. Think maybe it's anxiety like you have find it worse if I have to talk for any period of time, anyway having a stress echo test on Tuesday to see if further surgery is needed, actually feel like a walking time bomb at the moment and I guess I am scared to if I am honest but plodding on and trying very hard to remain positive. How are you doing my friend still anxious too?


Not bad Kaprin,just honest and I honestly think possibly what I would be doing.I was told to give up I don't really think I WANTED to but knew I HAD to so saw it all as a bit of a challenge.I think that having got this far I won't go back but I know that as a smoker I was fairly content despite of the health risks.The money side of things (I smoked around 80 a week) worried me more, I see that as really bad.I think I just count myself extremely lucky that despite being a smoker for all those years I seem so far to have got away, on the health side, EXTREMELY lightly.


By the way I am Bev and you need to be really proud of yourself you are doing fabulous


That's a really hard questions to answer.

I need to think about it some more x

hope everybody is ok?



You OK my friend?


Hey Bev,

Sorry to hear your not doing to good. But you do have to remain positive. Your in the best hands. These guys are experts and they don't mess around. You have every reason to feel anxious and worried, but worrying about it won't change it. All it will do is make you more anxious.

Anxiety can also make you feel a lot worse than it actually is. And you need to keep reminding yourself this.

Find things to do which makes you calm and relaxed. Not just physically but mentally also.

With your cough, I still have that cough, part quitting smoking part anxiety. But I'm calming the anxiety side down. (I'm still coughing up that brown crud thou).

Giving up smoking and your heart attack is a life changing event and it's going to take a while for you to recover and heal. But you keep posting on here and I will be with you every step of the way. Stay strong :-) xx


I find it impossible to answer. It was part of my wanting to be 'adult'. All the adults around me did, at at 14 I had a much older French boyfriend, who left me my first Gauloise to smoke alone when I was babysitting that night. It was exotic, cool, and the thing I could have that was out of the control of my horrible sister! It was my rebellion. It made me part of other groups of smokers, we could relate, were rebelling together in the late 60s. I loved smoking upstairs on the bus, outside cafes alone on travels and adventures around Europe, as a piece of sanity when insane things were happening. It was and is stupid stupid. It will shorten my life, I wish... But as my constant companion and friend... I wish...So stupid. Still need my head examining and wish I loved myself and body enough to 'worship it like a temple', as people do. So hard to change your past! Change your present and future, that we can do if we can get our heads straight, and still have our health enough to do it, in the here and now, stop living in the past. It's a necessity now.

Sorry, bit of an unstoppable flow started.

Thank you for making me think again.


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