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Published: 8 years ago
This is a reply to # 2,233,001

There aren't any alternatives

I don't know what you mean when you ask for "good alternatives for harmful tobacco smoking."  There are no "good alternatives."  It's either smoke tobacco, or don't.  E-cigs are not an "alternative" to smoking.  They simply replace the combustible tobacco with vaporized nicotine, and they actually exacerbate the oral fixation as studies are beginning to show.

It's like this:  I didn't stop smoking until I was ready to.  Even today, I still "crave" a cigarette because I was a practicing addict for over 35 years, and I'll always BE an addict.  So, I made the decision to stop, cold turkey, and made the choice to not replace one addiction with another.  No patch.  No gum.  No e-cig.  Just hard candy and keeping my hands busy.  And, I am being truthful when I type that I can go many days without even thinking about tobacco.  But, let me see someone smoking outside of a building, or see someone lighting up in a movie?  THEN, I'm thinking, "I just want one with my stinking cup of coffee.  Just one."  And, I am reminded that I'm an addict and that it's a matter of living in the here-and-now to manage my addiction.

I did not simply STOP, one day.  I weaned myself down by identifying triggers.  The phone would ring, and I would immediately light up.  Or, I'd get into the car, and light up.  Certain things were the triggers to smoke, and I had to take time and identify some of these.  Once I had identified some of the triggers, I would literally say, out loud, "I don't need that, right now."  And, I would work to resist the urge to light up.  I did this over a series of weeks until I was smoking less than 1/2 pack per day.  Then, I made the decision to stop.  The physical withdrawal lasted about 7 days for me, personally.  But, the psychological withdrawal continues, to this day.  The upside to this is that the episodes where I'm "triggered" and actually WANT to smoke are becoming fewer and further between.

Addiction to anything is simply what it is.  Whether it's tobacco, zealous religion, alcohol, or sex, addiction is addiction.  No........acknowledging that fact does not mean that I am obligated to LIKE it.  I just came to accept that I was, indeed, addicted to tobacco and that nothing that I did was going to negotiate, alter, or bargain away that fact.  I had a choice:  accept that I was an addict, or not. 

I have typed this, before, with regard to addiction, and it is a fact:  there is no "cure" for addiction.  There is physical withdrawal and management of impulses and triggers, but there is no supplement, medication, alternative, prayer, or wish that is going to "cure" any addiction.  And, I mean to type, ANY addiction.

The caveat here is that managing any addiction comes with this fact:  addiction is cruel in that "falling off the wagon" doesn't result in my picking up a pack of cigarettes and taking up where I left off.  The cruelty of addiction (any addiction) is that the addict will be compelled to make up for lost time.  In other words, the addict will immediately resume their addiction to where it WOULD have been if they had not stopped whatever it was that they were doing.  So, the further out one gets from their addiction, the harder the fall if they slip off the wagon.  This is not to cause anyone to feel shame or guilt for falling off of their wagon, by any stretch of the imagination - this is typed simply to validate how deeply ingrained addictive behaviors are.  We are only human beings, and "allowed" to make our mistakes, and most people with severe addictions have personal issues that can be addressed in individual counseling or support group settings, whenever necessary. 

So..........contemplate your situation.  Are you addicted, or do you just like to smoke?  Is your life centered around when and where you will smoke?  Does it interfere with your life?  Are you spending money on tobacco that should be spent elsewhere?  Just contemplate these things.  You'll sort it out. 

In the meantime, a couple of sites that may be helpful:




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