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ive been smoking on and off for around 18 months, mostly off, not enough to get addicted but recently my SA has been so bad since a recent incident and ive been craving the tabacco quite badly the past week or two. i think its for a few reasons though. it makes me feel so much better and forget about things, including SA and its a good way to meet new people with the fear stamped out by the nicotine. my parents dont know that i smoke and theyd hit the roof if they did but i dont want to give up. it seems to be a case of the lesser of the two evils at the moment. SA or ****. *sigh* :cig :stu
 

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I am an on/off smoker. Mostly I am a social smoker, like if others are smoking I will too. I figure that if I am going to get second hand smoke I may as well enjoy a nicotine high as well. I've never had substance abuse problems though so it's been okay (haven't had a cigarette in about 2 months and it tends to be something I do once every few weeks at most).

Yeah, I'm weird. I know.

Anyway I'm not sure what to say. I don't think that smoking is a healthy coping mechanism, but you probably know that so what's the point in me saying that. What I might suggest is, instead of using the nicotine to avoid the fear, try and allow yourself to be anxious and don't change it or view it as bad, strange as that may seem. Get involved in some sort of cognitive-behavioral therapy or acceptance and commitment therapy, or even dialectical behavior therapy, and see if there is a way to deal with your powerful emotions without feeling like nicotine is your only 'out'. I hope that makes sense.

But I don't know. I have met nice people on smoke breaks at work and such. I have done this at times when I felt really down and just wanted to chat with someone, no real pressure or anything. It's a nice relaxing way for me to socialize. It's hard, I'm sorry I don't have a good answer for you. I do wish you the best of luck though. :)

P.S. I had a thought. As I understand it, it's not any less addictive, but it is a little safer. Do you think that chewing that nicotine gum stuff might be a little bit safer way without damaging your lungs? I don't know much about the gum, just a thought. Plus then you wouldn't smell like smoke or have your parents freak out about it. There's also chewing tobacco but I think that stuff's gross, just IMO.
 

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I smoke with my anxiety too - not all the time and not in my house but - if I'm out with people around - yep, I like it. It makes things easier.

There's the relief of just having something to do with my hands - the cigarette, and also the high that calms me. Rediculous. I can go days and days without them but then sometimes I just want to chain-smoke.

The gum would be a good solution.
Nicotine isn't a carcinogen - it's the smoking and chewing of tobacco that kills you. One could get the high without the health risks, if they chose. If only I knew what to do with my hands when I'm anxious in front of people.
 

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Does nicotine really help with anxiety? If it's that effective maybe I'll buy some patches or gum.

I usually just stick my hands into my pockets, with my thumb on the outside, and kind of pull down on my pants using my exposed thumbs (I know that sounds weird.) I always do that when I'm nervous. I'd probably try to do that with a cig out of habit and burn my pants.
 

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Long time smoker here. I would suggest that you try to stop the habit before it gets a stronger hold of you. I enjoy smoking and its immediate effects, but I can no longer remember how it feels to run up stairs w/o gasping for air. If the cigs really do that much to reduce your anxiety, well, then I'd have a harder time in recommending that you stop smoking. I think I'd rather die a little earlier than I would've if that meant that my SA would be cured.
 

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Just a word of caution. Smoking does relieve anxiety and if it becomes a regular habit can be a nasty crutch. You don't even realize it until you try to quit.

For those prone to anxiety and depression, quitting can be a nasty ordeal. I smoked regularly for years and am part of a quit smoking forum. It's sad how many people there who've never had depression, are battling it now due to quitting. Although in alot of cases it's temporary, it can hit hard even after a few months of being smoke-free.

Your body comes to rely on the chemicals and when you stop it throws your body out of whack. They say this is especially true for females because of our physiological make-up.

I hope I'm not coming across as a born-again ex-smoker, it's just that I don't wish it on anyone. If you're not already addicted, quit now, it's not worth it.
 

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I'm trying to start smoking. I bought a pack of Capris today. The guy thought I was an idiot 15-year-old. For crying out loud, being 5'10" doesn't even make people think I'm older, anymore!

xoxo
Maggi
 

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I've got to have my cigarettes to get through the day. It really does help me to relieve some anxiety but I hate the fact that I use cigs as a crutch. Plus there's the whole thing about how it's going to kill me one day. That's kind of lame to.
 

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I've been smoking for 30 years now - a pack or better a day. My advise is if you haven't started - don't. Its a ***** to quit - and change all the habits of smoking while doing things

Like driving - many people have this habit
After meals
First thing in the morning, Last thing at night and evertime you can squeeze one in between times
Going outside in the winter - freezing your butt off to have a cigarete
and of course after sex! :lol

Things you have to look forward to:
Coughing up crap - not being able to do things as your short of breath
$$$$$$ that could be spent on trips - instead it goes up in smoke
Lack of acceptance by many
Painting your house more often
dingy yellow grime on everything if you don't
Cigarrette burns on the carpet - clothing - wind ect does this or carelessnes.

I'd really think about this before i took up the habit -

As for me - well it is the last vise i have since i gave up drinking, swearing, and chasing men. I am reluctant to quit.
 

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itsmemaggi said:
I'm trying to start smoking. I bought a pack of Capris today. The guy thought I was an idiot 15-year-old. For crying out loud, being 5'10" doesn't even make people think I'm older, anymore!

xoxo
Maggi
Some advice from a long-time smoker: DON'T START. Yes, I'm shouting. It's expensive, it's hell to try to quit (for even the most strong willed people I know), and it's gross. Smoking has been my "Crutch" for a very long time. You might think it helps your anxiety, but it's really a stimulant that only exacerbates anxiety. Plus...since anti-smoking laws are so strict these days, one often gets stuck in situations where they cannot have a cigarette for hours on end. An example: I was recently in an airport in a foreign country where smoking is allowed everywhere. Everywhere but the airport, anyway. So after I got past customs (three hours before my plane was scheduled to leave), I was not allowed to go back outside to have a few more smokes. Add that to a five hour plane ride, and I had eight hours of torture.
Please, don't start!!!!

ETA: I forgot to mention that you WILL get nasty wrinkles earlier on in life. You may not care about this now, but when you hit thirty, trust me, you will.
 

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Nearly everyone in my family smokes. I don't. Can't stand it, actually. I tried it when I was 12 or 13 and decided it is not worth it. Very little high for a whole lot of problems :no

Teeth problems, lung problems, gum problems, skin problems. The smoke stains everything in the house - anything that is white turns a beige color. It smells up your car and breath. Ashes go everywhere. And besides all of that don't forget the cost. I added up what my parents spend a year on cigarettes and if they instead saved that cash they could go on a nice vacation.
 

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itsmemaggi said:
I'm trying to start smoking. I bought a pack of Capris today. The guy thought I was an idiot 15-year-old. For crying out loud, being 5'10" doesn't even make people think I'm older, anymore!

xoxo
Maggi
Good lord, Maggi! DON"T start smoking! Maybe get the gum or something if you are looking for the nicotine high - but I wouldn't even recommend that. You don't want this disgusting habit. I've been smoking on and off forever and it seems that I am always struggling to quit completely. Just one more thing to feel like I'm failing at. You don't want this - more people judge you poorly as a smoker than not - and even if you hide it, do you need one more thing to feel you have to hide from people?

Why do you want to start? I don't understand it.
 

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I wonder if i'd get addicted if i tried smoking. Alcohol doesn't really do anything for me, at all, so maybe that wouldn't either.

I'm not about to start though. I couldn't afford to anyway lol.

And yeah, why are you trying to start maggi?
 

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I have been smoking for a couple years and now i don't even really get that relaxing buzz from the nicotine. Even though it may relieve your anxiety right now, if you get hooked it will eventually lose all positive aspects.
 

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I started smoking when I was about 19. I sitll don't smoke more than 3-4 a day. I can go without them, but I like to smoke when I wake up in the morning and have coffee and when I come home from working. I don't like my mom to know, so I keep it on the DL and that makes me smoke less. My favorite is just making my own because it costs so much less, and it's a better quality product, but my guy who owns a smoke shop hasn't ordered tobacco in a while, so I bought a pack. When I have packs I smoke more because they are just there and I don't have to make them.
 

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Wrennie said:
itsmemaggi said:
I'm trying to start smoking. I bought a pack of Capris today. The guy thought I was an idiot 15-year-old. For crying out loud, being 5'10" doesn't even make people think I'm older, anymore!

xoxo
Maggi
Good lord, Maggi! DON"T start smoking! Maybe get the gum or something if you are looking for the nicotine high - but I wouldn't even recommend that. You don't want this disgusting habit. I've been smoking on and off forever and it seems that I am always struggling to quit completely. Just one more thing to feel like I'm failing at. You don't want this - more people judge you poorly as a smoker than not - and even if you hide it, do you need one more thing to feel you have to hide from people?

Why do you want to start? I don't understand it.
It's just the feeling of wanting to do something negative, something that would piss people off. Something destructive. I know it's bad. I tried convincing myself that I'm so stressed that a cigarette every once in a while wouldn't be a bad thing... Stupid, I know. It's also the idiot mentality of, "I can buy cigarettes now, so why not?"

Thanks for the support, guys. :)

xoxo
Maggi
 

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itsmemaggi said:
It's just the feeling of wanting to do something negative, something that would @#%$ people off. Something destructive. I know it's bad. I tried convincing myself that I'm so stressed that a cigarette every once in a while wouldn't be a bad thing... Stupid, I know. It's also the idiot mentality of, "I can buy cigarettes now, so why not?"
Hey Maggi,

That's wild that you touched on that. I think I mentioned earlier that I frequent a quit smoking forum and there has been alot of discussion about how many of us use smoking as almost a weird punishment. And I mean quite a few people mentioned it, what you said isn't stupid at all. I'd never before considered smoking as a form of self harm b4 they mentioned it, but it makes alot of sense.
 

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Smoking does make you look cool though...

but seriously, I find it's never done anything to help with my anxiety whatsoever. I started smoking when I was 12 before I had any serious SA symptoms.

Every time I'm feeling nervous and get scared that I'm about to start trembling or something, I light up, and it never does one bit of good.
 
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