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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » READ-ONLY ARCHIVE » General Health & Nutrition » My best friend just told me she smokes.

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Author Topic: My best friend just told me she smokes.
Pokey
Neophyte
Member # 39018

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I love my best friend to death. She's a year younger than me and we help each other out a lot; we're always there for each other.
She's told me before that she looks up to me and she always values what I have to say. We've been friends for years. If anything happened to her, I don't know what I would do.
What do I tell her? She needs to stop smoking cigarettes.
She wants me to be aggressive and she says she needs help stopping.
She's calling herself retarded and I just can't believe she's doing this to herself.
I've already reminded her of her goals and how she's surrounded by people she loves but I'm just scared I'm not getting through to her.
What should I do? What should I say?

[ 06-28-2008, 11:24 PM: Message edited by: Pokey ]

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Well, since she's clearly asking for your help, you can certainly give it to her.

I don't know what your location is, but you might start by directing her to a site like Quitline: http://www.quitline.com/

You might also let her know that quitting before she really gets strongly addicted is going to be WAY easier than it will be as time passes. It's also much easier to get addicted and stay addicted when you start smoking when you're young.

Also know that whether you're doing it or she is, knocking down her esteem isn't likely to be helpful (I'm not even going to get started on "retarded" as an insult). So, rather than she or you expressing constant disappointment in her, both focus on her strengths and her capability. Quitting when one has barely started is actually very easy: she can do this.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Pokey
Neophyte
Member # 39018

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Before I read your reply I got strong with her and I think I got through to her a little more and we're good, but I'm still talking to her a lot about it tomorrow.
Thanks so much for the website reference.
I'll remember to stay positive and tell her it'll be easier to quit now than later.
I'm just shocked she would stoop so low. It's really hard for me to handle this.
Thanks so much.
I'll update this thread.

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orca
Scarleteen Volunteer
Member # 33665

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You know, it really isn't the worst thing in the world. It's unheatlhy, but it's not that horrible a thing. A lot of people experiment with smoking at some point in life. I did. I'm not proud of it and I certainly wouldn't recommend it to other people, but I did. No one is perfect, we all make mistakes, so there's no stooping here (unless she's actually stooping, which isn't so good for posture). Like Heather said, it doesn't help to make her feel bad about it.

--------------------
Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.--Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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You really can't take another person's choices that personally. In your life, people around you -- and maybe even you, about something else -- will choose to do things which are unhealthy, less than healthy, or just not that great for them. You'll find very few people as you go through life who don't engage in some kind of unhealthy behaviour or habits at one point or another. In other words, these kinds of things are things we all need to learn to handle and deal with.

I'll be frank: I've been a smoker since I was 11 years old (I'm now 38), a habit I started largely because I was exposed to it a lot growing up, and it was a way for me to cope with far bigger traumas I was unequipped to deal with. I have quit for decent periods of time twice, and tried to quit numerous other times. While I don't think of it as "stooping low," it certainly is not an addiction I am glad to have developed and struggle with, but it is what it is. That one's mine, and other people are addicted to eating foods which are bad for them, gambling, driving, bad relationships, taking sexual risks, drinking, others to shopping, others to dieting, others to other sorts of substances, what have you. We're all human and often are flawed or imperfect.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Pokey
Neophyte
Member # 39018

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I know we're all human. Thanks for the reassurance. I know I maybe shouldn't take it so personally, but she actually wants to quit because she knows it's bad for her and she wanted my help. I think everything's going to be okay because yesterday, at this coffee house we hang out at a lot, someone offered her a cigarette and her girlfriend and I were just like, NO. and then my friend turned it down. I trust her girlfriend and she's around her most of the time when she's at risk. We've both talked to her a lot about it. I'll update this thread if anything happens. I really think she's going to quit.
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Pokey
Neophyte
Member # 39018

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She's been smoke free ever since she came to me for help.
Thanks so much for easing my mind, heather and orca!

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