As someone who has never smoked a single cigarette it is quite easy to stand in judgement, telling other people, from those who chain smoke, to those who just enjoy an occasional social drag, why it is that they should quit. But I feel that would be both sanctimonious and pious, and frankly, I am neither. I do however, have a personal story of someone who used vaping as a way to give up smoking after a 30 year addiction that had seen him smoke more than 30 a day, every single day, and that it the story of my husband Peter. I’m really proud of him,and believe that his story shows that anyone can give up, with a combination of determination and sheer willpower.
Pete started smoking as a teenager, when James Dean with a cigarette was still the absolute epitome of cool. Cigarettes were cheaper then, and you could always easily buy a single cigarette at school from someone behind the bike sheds. Pete often His intake steadily increased, and neither breathing problems due to asthma, or the smoking ban that led to smokers being made to take the habit outside led to any thoughts of quitting.
In 2008, Pete’s mother, Rita, was diagnosed with Lung cancer. It was terminal, stage 4, and she died just four months later. Rita had also been a life long smoker, and still smoked crafty cigarettes as she was dying, not able to give up the very thing that was to end her life so prematurely. Pete adored his mom, and was by far a heavier smoker than Rita ever had been, but still he did not quit, despite my growing fears for his health. Our son Joe was just four months old when his grandmother died at 55, but her stolen life did not even tempt Pete to cut down.
But sometimes something has to give, and, finally in January 2014, something did happen that finally prompted Peter to finally try to quit. Joe was now five and idolised his dad. Pete had never smoked in our home and had tried to keep his habit away from Joe, but that hadn’t stopped Joe picking up a pen and telling us he was ‘smoking a nasty’ like dad. Pete was horrified. He had been doing some research into vaping and felt that this could be a way of quitting that might just work for him. (You can find some similar research here.)
He started with a vaping kit and alternated this with actual cigarettes, which cut his intake down to less than a pack of 20 per day, for the first time in 20 years. He then further reduced, so that actual cigarettes were limited to a pack of 10 per day, which had a great impact financially as the cost of cigarettes continued to soar with every new Budget. Eventually the cigarettes were gone – this took less than a month, which was pretty incredible, and habits like getting up in the night for a quick drag, or leaving a restaurant between courses all disappeared – for good as it turned out.
With cigarettes gone, Pete packed up the vaping kit and went cold turkey. It was not easy, but the introduction of vaping had made the process slightly more painless, and within another month, Pete was a non smoker. That was March 2014, and he has remained that way. It is sometimes hard for me to now remember that he had ever smoked, let alone been someone who had a really heavy habit.
If you are struggling to quit, or have been considering it, I would definitely recommend vaping as a way to cut down both your cigarette intake and costs, and as an effective way to quit. You can find a range of information about vaping, health benefits, research and e-cigarettes at https://www.vapemate.co.uk/ which may give you a little more food for thought.