Nicotine. Yes, it’s been well documented that it causes physical dependency. I have quit a lot of addictive substances in the past but the only thing that I haven’t managed to quit is smoking.
You know, if tobacco was discovered today, it’ll be illegal due to the health risks and addictive potential. However, it wasn’t and thus we have an entire generation of smokers.
I count myself among them. My first experience with a cigarette was during Chinese New Year when I was 7 years old. My grandfather was a chain smoker with cartons of cigarettes in his personal desk. He never stops smoking, not even in front of us. Of course, back then the awareness level of second hand smoke is quite a bit lower than today.
Anyway, back when I was a kid, he gave me a lit cigarette to use to light up my firecrackers. I’m a naturally curious person and I know I wasn’t supposed to smoke it…but I did. It’s just my personality. I wanted to see what it feels like for myself, even at such a young age.
Of course, I didn’t know how to inhale back then but my parents smelled the smoke on me and gave me one hell of a thrashing.
I come from a family of smokers. Both my paternal and maternal grandfather were chain smokers. Notice the past tense?
Not surprisingly, they both died of lung cancer. My paternal grandfather kicked the bucket when I was 12. My maternal one hung on for 1 year longer before he went six feet under.
Cancer genes runs in my family. My mother is battling lung cancer even though she has never smoked a single cigarette in my life. I do believe second hand smoke had a lot to do with it though. It can’t be much fun to live around chain smokers.
Myself? I picked up the habit in my early teens. What started as social smoking turned into a full blown addiction in two years. I couldn’t get out of bed without first smoking at least two Marlboro Reds, with deep inhales and I’ll be craving for a cigarette by 10 am.
I smoked in school like everyone else and they all thought I was cool. See, when you’re an impressionable teenager, being one of the “bad boys” who smoked behind the toilet seems like just about the most awesome figure to look up to.
It is not.
I have tried to quit a lot of times and never succeeded. It isn’t a “cool” thing to do, no matter what you think when you’re a teenager or in your early twenties. Just coz everyone does it doesn’t mean you should. Wouldn’t it be cooler if you didn’t smoke? You’ll be the exception instead of the ones trying so hard to fit in.
I won’t preach so I’ll keep this short but let me just tell you the ways smoking WILL affect you when you get older. I speak from personal experience.
Tar stains your teeth. It looks ugly and although you can bleach it all you want, smoking will continue to stain your teeth.
I’ve often heard people say that dating smokers are like kissing ash trays. I notice that I do have bad breath but it never quite sunk until I dated a smoker who chain smokes and you literally have to air out the room whenever she speaks. It’s just not sexy to have bad breath.
Yup, smoking also ages your skin. I’m lucky coz I have great genes in the youth department (possibly to compensate for the high rates of cancer that runs in my family) but you will most definitely age faster when you smoke.
When you’re young, all you want to do is to look older and more “mature”. Trust me, the opposite will be true once you hit your mid-twenties. You’ll give anything to look younger. You don’t want to start smoking and do all that damage to your youthful complexion. You can’t quit smoking as easily as you think.
I’ve always thought this was just government propaganda thrown out to discourage smoking…until I discovered the medical journals who confirmed it. I still was in a state of denial though – I just pushed it out of my head. Now that I’m finally in my 30’s the effects become more and more apparent.
The quality of your erection drops and it can be hard to get it up sometimes too. This one is the real banger (no pun intended) – if you want to have a healthy sex life until you’re nice and old, smoking is not one of the things you want to pick up.
I can’t tell you what to do. It’s just not my style. I’m all about personal experience and experimentation. I know better than to convince people who doesn’t want to be convinced. You just push them the opposite way. I was like that too. When someone tells me to quit smoking, I just laughed and dismissed them.
You have to figure it out for yourself. You can do that the easy way or the hard way. I’m just telling you that it’s not easy to quit smoking unless you’re very dedicated so if you want to start, just think about what the “future-you” would want.
Surf on over to http://www.facebook.com/TAK.NAK.MEROKOK if you plan to quit.
Now for the fun stuff! There is a contest running where you can win:
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- 2nd Prize – RM 700 cash
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- 4th Prize – RM 300 cash
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just by sending in a picture. The most creative picture that shows Tak Nak to smoking/smoking kills/the dangers of second hand smoke will win. The winners will be determined by votes (50%) and judges (50%). The only rule is that the picture must not show cigarettes or a cigarette box.
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