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Stop Smoking - Confession of a Nicotine Addict

Updated on April 5, 2018
Sue Adams profile image

Dancer, choreologist (movement notator), author on fitness and health, and Fellow of the Benesh Institute at the Royal Academy of Dance.

Smoking Reduces Sperm Count
Smoking Reduces Sperm Count

Hopelessly Addicted

I am a long term victim of nicotine addiction determined to finally give up the filthy habit of cigarette smoking today, now, this instant, yes - cold turkey. To help me fight withdrawal symptoms I have decided to publish these Confessions Of A Nicotine Addict , so wish me luck.

There is a cigarette butt in a very small ashtray; one of those lovely green glass ones. That is the very last cigarette I will have smoked, ever, definitely. Otherwise I’ll die of suffocation, lack of breathing, lung cancer, throat or tongue cancer, or God only knows what other horrible death.

How It All started

I smoked my first cigarette at age fourteen when my brother Tom, now a sociology professor, tempted me in taking a puff. "Go on, try it, it's great!" he said. The year was 1968. Every one was smoking then. I used to admire how my mum and her friends pulled in the smoke through the mouth and then, as if by magic, it would come out in two neat swirls out of their nostrils. How did they do that? My brother Tom could even blow smoke rings. He was sixteen. ‘It’s really nice,’ he said, ‘makes you all dizzy’. So that is how I began. I pulled on the fag and coughed. Tom explained how I should inhale. Then I coughed even more, got all dizzy and had to lie down on the bed.

Bad Breath

It's no longer "cool" to smoke.
It's no longer "cool" to smoke. | Source

Socialy Incorrect

In those days it was a matter of personal preference. There was not the health scare and public stigma attached to smoking. People did not know smoking could cause lung cancer. Like today people don’t seem to know that a daily intake of more than one glass of alcohol can cause brain and liver damage. Neither are they interested in the health hazards of meat and dairy products. In a couple of decades from now, drinking alcohol and eating animal products may become as socially incorrect as smoking is today. Stop digressing Juliette; smoking is filthy.

Undercover Smoker

I have tried giving up smoking several times in my life. When I was nineteen I had a boyfriend, Ben who did not smoke and did not like me smoking. I said I’d given up while in the mean time always had a cigarette or a but hidden in the long metal cover of a short eyebrow pencil in my make-up bag. Then every time I went to the toilet I took a few puffs on the sneak . Soon enough Ben found out. He could obviously smell my bad smoker's breath; so then my smoking was out in the open, official again, I was no longer an undercover smoker.

Who are you Kidding?

The only person I can now kid is myself. So when I wake up in the middle of the night with a cough attack because I cannot breathe, I tell myself: ‘give up smoking!’ and at that moment I am determined to give up. Come the next day I change my mind and carry on smoking. It has often happened that I have thrown away my tobacco and papers (carefully wrapped up in a plastic bag) only to retrieve them again out of the garbage can a few hours later. Crazy!

I Gave up Smoking

More recently I gave up smoking again, feeling very self-righteous for about three weeks (picking up the odd half smoked cigarette from others). With some help from pills to stop smoking I kept it up with great difficulty until I was beginning to grow mouth ulcers. I had read about such side effects but they had never been explained to me. Could it be possible, I asked myself that the nicotine actually serves as a kind of germ killer and keeps my mouth free from infections? Hhm...

Then Started Again - Excuses Excuses

My dog died a terrible death, nearly causing me to have a nervous breakdown. Blame the dog, now I smoke again and I'm not so sure anymore that giving up is a good idea. Maybe people are exaggerating. The reason I was coughing so much, I discovered, was because the tobacco was too dry. I have now got into a routine of clearing my lungs last thing at night and I sleep through, no problem.

Smoke or Eat?

When I fail to give up smoking I even begin to think positive thoughts about the evil custom. I delude myself into thinking that perhaps smokers are healthier than non-smokers. All my friends who gave up smoking have gained weight. I look at all the obese people trapped inside buildings all their lives.

Fresh Air

Since the ban on indoor smoking, we (smokers) may be healthier than non-smokers, enjoying the "great outdoors" we get a regular supply of fresh air while smoking outside in the street or on café terraces, even in heavy rain storms in sub zero temperatures. Smokers have now become the outdoor people. Good smokers have learned to thoroughly cough up the dirt, thereby cleaning and strengthening their lungs.


Spending over-average time outdoors improves the mood too. So smokers are generally more jovial than their counterparts. And smokers are more patient and compassionate because they have been treated like dirty lepers for so long. There now has evolved a certain camaraderie among smokers - sharing a sin.

How many times have you tried to give up smoking?

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But it's no good beating around the smoky bush. It is bad to smoke and knowing what we know today, what with passive smoking and all that, I would never smoke indoors in the proximity of children or where my filthy habit could affect other people. But still, of all the addictions prevailing, including food, alcohol, cocaine, marijuana, the Internet, for me, smoking 50 grams of best light tobacco over a period of ten days, occasionally spiced with some home grown, keeps me who I am. I guess the key is, like for everything else, moderation.

Juliette, you are crazy ...

My friends often tell me I'm crazy, especially when I come out with statements like:

"Did you know that laughing and coughing are the two foremost physical activities that naturally tone the stomach and guarantee you a six pack ? "


There you go, I began this article with a strong determination to finally quit smoking for ever, and ended up persuading myself that smoking is not as bad as people make out. No doubt I shall have another go at trying to give up in the near future but for now, I'm still at it, mourning my dog with great puffs of smelly smoke surrounding my self-pitying aura.

I Did It!

Exciting Update!

Finally it happened; I am now officially an "Ex Smoker". To cut a horrible story short, this is what happened:

About three months ago I woke up in the middle of the night with, what I found out the next day was, an accute ASTHMA ATTACK! I thought I was dying. I couldn't breathe and was husking: "PEASE; PLEASE...." I coughed and coughed until my trachea felt like sandpaper. The next day, when I told a friend, she said it had been as asthma attack. She went to the pharmacy and got me two inhalers, which, she said I should use 3 times a day for one week.

That did it. It so scared the s**t out of me that I never touched a fag since.

I do hope that any smokers out there who read this won't let it come to that before they give up the smokes. It took me decades to learn the hard way that cigarette smoke isn't meant to go into people's lungs.

I hope that "Confessions of a Nicotine Addict" has been helpful for others who struggle with the habit. Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.


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    • Efficient Admin profile image

      Michelle Dee 

      6 years ago from Charlotte, NC

      Wow Sue Adams what a great article. I am coming up on 4 months Quit, and it tooks me probably 30 times to get this far. I remember when I was a smoker, if I ran out of cigarettes, I would dig through the already smoked butts, to find some I could relight to get one more puff out of them. It was really smelly and nasty to dig through the used butts just so I could get a few drags.

      I'm glad you were able to quit and I'm so sorry about your dog. I love them animals. They are like family and they have feelings.

    • Sue Adams profile imageAUTHOR

      Juliette Kando FI Chor 

      7 years ago from Andalusia

      Hi Conrad,

      I just read your very detailed and informative Hub on Emphysema. I never knew that it could take as long as 44 years for the body to completely heal from smoking. A good incentive to stop early or not start at all.

    • conradofontanilla profile image


      7 years ago from Philippines

      The most common things you get from smoking are cancer, heart disease, asthma and emphysema. The inhalers of your stream smoke will get the same things. Those who escape these diseases may have diets that neutralize free radicals (antioxidants) and X-rays in smoke which are the culprits, not tar. Tar or nicotine is only addictive. I don't think death is a deterrent to smoking. It could be that people think they will die anyway. I have a Hub "Emphysema Kills Its Victim (Smoker and Non-Smoker) - Slowly But Surely If Not Stopped Early." May be I will edit out that word "Kills" because death does not matter to a cigarette addict.

    • Sue Adams profile imageAUTHOR

      Juliette Kando FI Chor 

      7 years ago from Andalusia

      Hi Andy,

      You're going to have to give up smoking and you know it. If you do it in a year from now you'll think: Why didn't I do this a year ago! So you might as well do it now.

    • profile image

      Andy D 

      7 years ago

      So how is it going? I'm hopelessly addicted . I'm 60 and have trouble breathing. I've been smoking since I was 6. That is right, since 1957. I am pretty good when on Chantix, but my pot consumption goes up. So I gather that my habit is oral.

    • Sue Adams profile imageAUTHOR

      Juliette Kando FI Chor 

      7 years ago from Andalusia

      Hi Alexandra,

      Sorry, you are quite right and no, I don't have anything against schizophrenics, I changed the word "schizo" to "crazy".

      Thank you for pointing this out. I didn't mean to offend.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I am totally addicted to cigs. BTW, do you have problems with schizophrenics? I hope not! U said something about them. U can't use that term loosely as meaning crazy! I'm married to one and love him very much! And he's not crazy.

    • Neil Keleher profile image

      Neil Keleher 

      7 years ago from Taiwan

      thanks sue

    • Sue Adams profile imageAUTHOR

      Juliette Kando FI Chor 

      7 years ago from Andalusia

      Hi Neil Keleher,

      You are lucky to be a non-smoker. Keep it that way and... when you have a desperate problem, think 1 year ahead when you can laugh about it? :)

    • Neil Keleher profile image

      Neil Keleher 

      7 years ago from Taiwan

      Like your comment about coughing and laughing being good ab exercises. Totally agree with you. Not a smoker but enjoyed reading your hub.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      The best thing one can do with one's habits, is to improve them bit by bit and finally discover that happiness and feeling good is, as nature intended, the norm.

    • Sue Adams profile imageAUTHOR

      Juliette Kando FI Chor 

      8 years ago from Andalusia

      Yes, Martin, I did finally discover the real horror of cigarette smoking.

      Read this anonymous quote:

      WHO AM I?

      * I am your constant companion. I am your greatest helper or heaviest burden.

      * I will push you onward or drag you down to failure. I am completely at your command.

      * Half the things you do you might just as well turn over to me and I will be able to do

      them quickly and correctly.

      * I am easily managed—you must merely be firm with me.

      * Show me exactly how you want something done and after a few lessons I will do it automatically.

      * I am the servant of all great men; and alas, of all failures, as well.

      * Those who are great, I have made great. Those who are failures, I have made failures.

      * I am not a machine, though I work with all the precision of a machine plus the intelligence of a human.

      * You may run me for profit or run me for ruin—it makes no difference to me.

      * Take me, train me, be firm with me, and I will place the world at your feet.

      * Be easy with me and I will destroy you. Who am I?

      I am habit!

      by Anonymous

      Giving up smoking has triggered a change for a whole new set of habits: like when to eat, work, sleep, spend time outdoors, at the computer, etc.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      It took me four attempts to finally give up smoking. Now I don't even miss it anymore and think of all the years and money I wasted on the evil poison.

    • Sue Adams profile imageAUTHOR

      Juliette Kando FI Chor 

      9 years ago from Andalusia

      You're welcome jiberish.

    • jiberish profile image


      9 years ago from florida

      Sue, Thanks this was great. I'm a Fan.

    • Sue Adams profile imageAUTHOR

      Juliette Kando FI Chor 

      9 years ago from Andalusia

      Hi ralwus, good to hear from you. Remember Betty Davis? She lived a long life as a graceful chain smoker.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Welcome to HP. I too am a long time smoker. I just enjoy it, always did, hard to get off of it now. Wellll, I suppose there are worse things. Good luck now. CC

    • Sue Adams profile imageAUTHOR

      Juliette Kando FI Chor 

      9 years ago from Andalusia

      Thank you for dropping by Jane and Appletreedeals. Yes I read your tip on placing headings at the end of previous capsule and implemented it on some of my hubs. See what happens.

    • Appletreedeals profile image


      9 years ago from Salisbury, Maryland USA

      Sue, here's a tip another experienced hubber gave me, can't vouch for it but it makes sense:

      put your 2nd capsule title at the very bottom of the first capsule, when editing capsule just highlite and choose firmat: H2 instead of "paragraph", this will make it look just like a capsule title.

      Then just leave title block empty in 2nd capsule.

      when viewed it looks just as if you did it normally in the 2nd capsule.

      Has something to do with getting Google to place another row of ads between 1st and 2nd capsule. more revenue potential for you

    • Jane@CM profile image


      9 years ago

      This is a great hub. I've tried for years to quit. I find them stress reducing. And you are right, we are outside getting our "fresh air"!! Damn, I hate when its -20 outside though, even the garage is cold then :)


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