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AussieAspie
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15 Aug 2010, 7:47 am

Hi, I have as, depression and anxiety. I am a smoker, drinker and I smoke pot. I have been told by medical people that I self medicate on booze and pot.
I am in a relatonship with a woman thats been going on for more than a year. She doesn't smoke cigarettes. I have tried to give them up as recently as yesterday I was on nicorette inhaelers. Yesterday I bought a pack of smokes a the shop and didn't tell my partner until today. She is now freaking out because I hid them and lied. So now she doesn't feel she ca trust me.
The question I have is,
Have you got AS and do you smoke? If so and you were supposed to give them up would it be very hard for you to do it? I mean would it feel like your whole life meant nothing if you did not smoke anymore?



greeneyes
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15 Aug 2010, 8:29 am

Yes I am a very heavy smoker and I need to give up because recently I've had very high blood pressure. I think its harder for someone who is depressed because of the chemical effects of the withdrawal. Also it may be more difficult for AS people because It is a routine and change of routine can cause anxiety.

Having said that, I did give up for 18months and started again :( So it is possible and I reached the stage where I didn't miss or think about it. I started again because I was staying somewhere were everybody smoked.

You could try very strong nicotine replacement I used the nasal spray which is the strongest and use if for longer and wean yourself off slowly.

And if your partner is not happy about you smoking (which is understandable) you could compromise and cut down and smoke outside until you are feeling less depressed and it will be easier to quit which is what I hope to do.

But if you give it another go you might not find it too difficult after all because everyone feels terrible at first. And I think its common to have a few false starts.

Good Luck

Although I'm not sure how qualified I am to give advice being a bit of a failure myself!



Celoneth
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15 Aug 2010, 8:55 am

I smoked for about 8 years then quit. The first week or two are the hardest, but it gets easier. What helped me, was writing down a cost-benefit list of giving up smoking - the benefits clearly outweighed the costs so every time I wanted to smoke, I'd remind myself that it was irrational, and that not giving into the craving would be better.
Also, you may want to cut down on the drinking while you're quitting, as alcohol tends to have an anaesthetic effect that makes cigarettes taste better.. pot might have the opposite effect.



leejosepho
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15 Aug 2010, 11:56 am

AussieAspie wrote:
I have been told by medical people that I self medicate on booze and pot ...
... as recently as yesterday I was on nicorette inhaelers ...
Have you got AS and do you smoke?


Yes, and I also used to self-medicate on booze and pot.

AussieAspie wrote:
If so and you were supposed to give them up would it be very hard for you to do it?


For me, "impossible" would actually be the correct word there.

AussieAspie wrote:
I mean would it feel like your whole life meant nothing if you did not smoke anymore?


More like I simply could not live life at all without the self-medication that was nevertheless killing me.

Tell your partner you need to find some help for learning to live without self-medicating, then tell your doctor you need hospitalization for detoxification ... then take a look at the experience shared in a book called "Alcoholics Anonymous" while considering its substitution for self-medication.


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Moog
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15 Aug 2010, 2:27 pm

Quote:
Have you got AS and do you smoke? If so and you were supposed to give them up would it be very hard for you to do it? I mean would it feel like your whole life meant nothing if you did not smoke anymore?


I'm sorry you got in trouble with your missus. That sucks. It sounds a bit like you might be looking for some support, or reasons to keep smoking. But never mind, I'm going to share how I quit instead.

It was very hard giving up, it took many years of trying various things. Eventually I found Alan Carr's book 'Easy Way to Stop Smoking' and that worked. Another method I believe actually works, is hypnosis. A hypnotist will cost a bit, but you can be cured in very few sessions, and then you save all the money you would spend on cigarettes.


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peterd
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16 Aug 2010, 6:24 am

I smoke pot, but not tobacco - hell, I'm diabetic and nicotine is a bit on the negative side even for me. And yes, I'm in conversations with my partner and my shrink about the positive aspects of not doing it. And yes, I tell less than the whole truth sometimes.

Probably not good, in the long term, but the immediate challenge is always being able to get through today...



bee33
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16 Aug 2010, 1:48 pm

The problem for me is not with cravings or withdrawal, but that cigarettes act chemically as a psychoactive medication. After two months of not smoking, I start to fall apart emotionally. Nicotine gum or lozenges don't replace the chemical effect of cigarettes.

This is not to discourage you, but it's something to be aware of, so that you can be fully conscious of the effects that quitting might have on you. It's a lot easier if you know why you are falling apart than to wonder if you are suddenly losing your mind, which is what I thought the first couple of times I quit for more than two months. I did not at first make the connection that not smoking was what was having this effect.

You might want to go to a psychiatrist and get some medication for your depression, because quitting can make depression worse.

You might also want to share some of this information with your girlfriend, so that she can realize that quitting smoking is not simply giving up a habit, it's much more complex than that.



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16 Aug 2010, 8:14 pm

be honest with your girlfriend from now on or you will have two problems: cigarettes and a relationship on the rocks. as is, one problem will exacerbate the other. but neither by itself is insurmountable (assuming your relationship is otherwise good)


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fleche
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17 Aug 2010, 3:47 pm

I smoked heavily for about 6 years and yeah, quitting was one of the toughest things I ever did. But well worth it.

You are fighting a strong physical addiction along with a perhaps an even stronger psychological addiction. The key is to fight as hard as you can against the compulsion, but don't beat yourself up when succumb. Just accept that by smoking that cig you are slowing down the process of quitting and thus making it more painful on yourself. But you are still making headway if you can go longer between breakdowns.

Don't keep the pack. Once you've had the smoke and come to your senses: throw it away. It will make it a lot easier to resist if you don't have them around and you have to shell out for a new pack.

You may need to avoid triggering activities for a while. I had to stay away from smokers and smoky places for a long while but now it doesn't bother me (I even find it repulsive). If you drink or eat something that gives you that "taste" in your mouth and makes you crave a smoke, go brush your teeth. Kills the craving and good for your teeth.

Taking up an activity that requires good breathing really helps show you how much your health is improving. Jogging is the most straightforward.

Good luck, I still think quitting is one of the smartest moves I ever made. Apologize and be honest with the girl, it makes things easier.


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brownleefamily
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19 Aug 2010, 7:49 am

I smoked for about 18 years (started at 14) then quit for about a year and a half. Then started up again on cigars. I definitely agree on identifying your triggers for smoking. I didn’t immediately quit smoking, I first eliminated sugars and caffeine from my diet (cokes, coffee, pastries) these were my triggers, and of course beer. Then I eliminated smoking in my vehicle (I never smoked in my own house). Then switched to the lowest nicotine cigarettes I could find (the NOW brand). Great system for me, withdrawals weren’t that tough.
However, the thing that brought me back (and keeps me smoking) is that smoking gives me a reason to excuse myself from people or a situation and provides that 10-15 feet radius shield that I some times need.
Anybody else feel this way?


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19 Aug 2010, 8:54 pm

i smoked 1.5 packs or more of Camels every day for 6 years. i quit 16 years ago, and i still miss it every g*dd*mned day. i literally DREAM about smoking at least once a week. but i have not touched a single cigarette in all those years.

y'know what i think makes a big difference? whether you actually *want* to quit for yourself. if you quit for someone else, it will not work.


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Lene
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20 Aug 2010, 3:11 am

I think the real issue here is the deception, rather than simply the cigarettes.