Pregnancy

Baby Blues: I’m A Full-On Smoker Again And I’m Not Beating Myself Up About It

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From what I’ve read, nicotine causes your brain to release serotonin, much like antidepressants. Whether this is true or not, I do know that I feel less depressed and more functional when I’m smoking. That’s exactly what happened when I started again that day. Perhaps this has nothing to do with my PPD, perhaps if I’d never started smoking in my early 20s I wouldn’t have developed this chemical dependency that makes me only feel “normal” when I have nicotine in my system. And maybe one day I’ll be able to afford antidepressants, and I’ll be ready to quit smoking again.

But this time, smoking is symbolic in a way. It is my reminder that I’m not a perfect mom, and I don’t have to be. Before, I was constantly on the verge of losing my mind because I felt like a failure for not exercising enough, not working hard enough, not eating the right kinds of foods and not balancing my life correctly. I legitimately thought if I just tried hard enough, everything could be exactly as I wanted it to be. I didn’t rest. Daily, my husband had to remind me to relax.

This mentality was killing me. It was killing me faster and deeper than any cigarette habit could. Although I’m aware of the long term dangers of smoking, what I fear most is the emotional consequences I might suffer if I do the “right” thing and quit again. I would rather live a short, mostly happy life than a long one filled with near-constant anxiety and guilt.

Oddly enough, since easing up on myself, I don’t feel some strange compulsion to have a cigarette every hour, on the hour. That was my routine in the old days. Now, I see it as something to do when I need a moment to regroup. If I’m distracted or busy or engaged in an activity I love, I don’t have to stop to have a cigarette. I just do it when I feel like it. Allowing myself not to feel guilty about it also allows me to not feel like a slave to a habit.

When my daughter is old enough to understand, I’m going to be as candid as possible with her about smoking. I will, of course, explain that it is easier to never start smoking than to start and quit. I’ll tell her it’s more addictive than street drugs, and just as dangerous. I will answer any questions she has, as hard as they may be to address. And if she understands everything and chooses to smoke too, I won’t judge her for a second.

(photo: Givaga / Shutterstock)

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102 Comments

  1. FormerSmoker

    June 14, 2013 at 11:24 am

    Please try an electronic cigarette instead of a real one. You get the nicotine, the motion of smoking, the feeling of inhaling and blowing out “smoke” (which is just water vapor with an electronic cigarette) but none of the tar, toxins, and actual smoke of a real cigarette. There’s no smoke, no ash, no smell, and no tobacco. Do a bit of research to find a reputable brand. You can gradually step down your nicotine level if you so choose. Or not. Please look into it. I made the switch six weeks ago and haven’t had a real cigarette since. I also have no desire for one either. I honestly believe it is so much better than actual cigarettes.

    • Sarah

      June 14, 2013 at 12:57 pm

      ^ I concur. Though a non-smoker myself, my brother and mother have both been life-long smokers (they each started in early high school.) They RAVE about how much better they feel physically and how much money they’re saving. They’re still getting nicotine, but are also able to walk for any distance and climb stairs without being out of breath.

  2. Krissy

    June 14, 2013 at 11:26 am

    I understand, but vote you should try e-cigarettes. My dad smoked for 40 years and switched, and the difference is amazing – no more smell, much more active and healthy. He can still get nicotine, but without the tar and chemical additives.

  3. Guest

    June 14, 2013 at 11:30 am

    …Aren’t you still nursing?

    • Eve Vawter

      June 14, 2013 at 11:57 am

      I have a beautiful photo of my mom looking super hot and nursing me with a cigarette in her hand . JUST LIKE MADMEN

    • Koa_Beck

      June 14, 2013 at 11:59 am

      YES

    • Eve Vawter

      June 14, 2013 at 12:12 pm

      I am gonna call and ask her if she also had a cocktail or three when it was taken!

    • Rachelle

      June 14, 2013 at 6:49 pm

      And I have one of my Mom putting a bottle in my mouth with one hand and smoking with the other.

      The smoker side of me thinks it’s hilarious… the ex-smoker side of me pouts when I see it.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 15, 2013 at 10:11 am

      That gets me to wondering if you would have felt super hot nursing while smoking a cigarette yourself? lol I mean, I totally see you looking super hot at any time, but… 😉

    • Guest

      June 14, 2013 at 9:48 pm

      Nicotine leaves the breast tissue about 15 minutes after smoking a cigarette, so if she’s waiting that long before nursing the kid isn’t getting any of the nicotine. And if she’s not waiting that long, much of the research indicates children will sleep less than those who aren’t nursing from smoking parents but not much beyond that.

  4. Blueathena623

    June 14, 2013 at 11:34 am

    You horrible rotten person. Not really, since I’m smoking a cig while writing this. I’m sure people will think this is an awful excuse, but one thing my psychiatrist told me was that people with mental illness have an even harder time at quitting than the general population. Didn’t smoke during pregnancy and while breast feeding, but one day I just thought I was going to snap, and I mean SNAP, so I picked up the cigs again. I’ll quit for a week, or a month, and then I’ll have that breaking point again. I hate it. Its an expensive, dirty, nasty, killing habit, but we crazies love self-medicating with drugs, and niccotine is a drug.

    • NeuroNerd

      June 14, 2013 at 12:42 pm

      Nicotine is an anti-anxiety drug, in fact. Most people with mental illness tend to have anxiety symptoms, and the withdrawal from a drug is usually to experience a severe version of the opposite of the drugs effects, so when someone quits smoking, he/she generally experiences HIGHER levels of anxiety than normal. It takes the brain a period to adjust back.

      Also, nicotine is particularly addictive, because it’s so good at bonding to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (called such since since nicotine binds better to them that actual acetylcholine) that your brain starts to make LESS acetylcholine (it figures why bother since we’re getting this stuff for free that works better). It’s your brain being “lazy” that actually drives the physical cravings.

      I don’t know if you actually cared to know any of that, but I just thought I’d share in case you were.

    • Rachelle

      June 14, 2013 at 6:48 pm

      Booya.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 1:05 am

      That was super spiffy information. Thank you!

    • Lashatumbai

      June 14, 2013 at 8:23 pm

      I have diagnosed OCD, and when I quit smoking almost two years ago I spiraled into a three month anxiety attack that only eased with therapy and meds. I’m back off off the meds again and still smoke free, but it was AWFUL for awhile. E-cigs were a godsend for me trying to quit, too.

  5. Véronique Houde

    June 14, 2013 at 11:35 am

    I find it interesting that you would prefer to smoke cigarettes to “drug” your PPD, which is highly toxic, smells bad and will have an effect on your wallet when you already have financial difficulties, but you categorically refuse to take anti-depressants, which are safe, won’t kill you, and probably cost even less than cigarettes (well, it’s the case in Canada, not sure about the US)

    • Ptownsteveschick

      June 14, 2013 at 5:39 pm

      Exactly my problem with this article. If she had said “I am a drunk again and I don’t feel bad about it, or I am cutting myself again and I don’t feel bad etc” I think it would be more obvious that this is self medicating through an addiction, and no one would be congratulating. Part of my depression treatment was to give up all the self-harming and unhealthy crutches that I used to cope instead of getting real treatment. And it sucked, but I got better. I really hope the people reading this article aren’t thinking that taking up a bad habit/addiction is way to get better.

    • Rachel Heston-Davis

      August 9, 2013 at 12:28 am

      Sounds like she didn’t purposely take up cigs again in response to depression, but slid back into it at social events with friends, etc. This is less about her purposely turning to a coping mechanism, and more about the fact that since she is back in this habit, is now (in the middle of PPD) really the time to fight that uphill battle and get back out?

    • Sherlock-lady

      June 14, 2013 at 5:45 pm

      Yeah, I have the same problem with her. I suffer from anxiety and panic, my husband has depression and anxious attacks (sounds a lot like her). We would be miserable without our psychologists and medication. I was barely functional before I started therapy. Seriously, getting help is GOOD. She treats it like, “If I go to therapy or start meds, then the depression wins!” NO, that is the depression talking. Also, smoking and having cycles of deep depression and anxiety doesn’t sound like you are doing better at all.

    • Madame Ovaries

      June 15, 2013 at 11:36 am

      “And maybe one day I’ll be able to afford antidepressants…”

      Saying she is categorically refusing to take antidepressants is a misrepresentation. Mental health care is expensive and not covered by all health plans.

      No one is saying smoking isn’t bad for you. We all saw the slides of cancerous lungs in grade school. She is admitting she is making a far from perfect choice because it appears to be the best one for her right now (and it sure sounds like she has weighed all the pros and cons). Cut her some slack!

    • Véronique Houde

      June 15, 2013 at 12:49 pm

      From consumer reports: “Retail prices for commonly prescribed antidepressants range from about 20$ a month to more than 400$ a month”. On average, if you smoke half a pack of cigarettes a day, you are spending 100$ minimum a month on cigarettes. Most full-time smokers smoke more like a pack to a pack and a half a day, costing them at least 200$ a month. Now, considering that most anti-depressants have generic versions, meaning you definitely can pay 50$ a month for your anti-depressants, does it really seem like a bargain to choose to smoke instead of taking anti-depressants? It’s just simple math… In quebec, fyi, a pack of cigarettes costs over 10$, meaning that you’re definitely taxing your wallet by taking up the habit.

    • Rachelle

      June 15, 2013 at 12:58 pm

      Point match.

    • Madame Ovaries

      June 15, 2013 at 1:39 pm

      Excellent point…if there’s a store you can go to and say “sir, a pack of your cheapest antidepressants, please!” The cost of seeing a psychiatrist would jack the cost way up if you have no or minimal insurance, and you need a prescription to get le drugs. Cigarettes do not cost $10 a pack here in sunny Detroit (I don’t smoke, but I know I have seen prices for smokes that are half that).

      I’m not saying smoking is cheap, but the poster seems like she has weighed all her options here. You present the issue of cost like she hasn’t considered it and I’m willing to bet she has.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 15, 2013 at 1:42 pm

      fact: you don’t need a psychiatrist to get anti-depressants. You can see your doctor 3 times a year, and when you factor in the cost of seeing your doctor on a monthly basis, it’s still less. And the cost of cigarettes I quoted were for the US actually. The point still remains the same, even with your arguments.

    • Madame Ovaries

      June 15, 2013 at 1:52 pm

      If there is a general practice doctor that will prescribe antidepressants, that sounds amaze. When I was battling depression, my regular doctor referred me to a psychologist, who then had to refer me to a psychiatrist. I’m sure there is a great doctor out there who could help her out, but she might see a few doctors before she found one that would prescribe. That could cost a lot if you have no insurance.

      At any rate, MY point also remains the same: you aren’t privy to her financial situation and you are making a lot of assumptions about what she could or should be doing instead. Having read this column for awhile, Amanda seems like an intelligent adult and I can’t believe she hasn’t really weighed out the financial aspect of her habit. What’s it called again when you are a sanctimommy but not necessarily about a parenting issue…?

    • Ptownsteveschick

      June 15, 2013 at 2:06 pm

      Every general practice doctor I have ever been to, including my obgyn, has been comfortable prescribing me anti depressants.

    • Justme

      June 15, 2013 at 2:37 pm

      My OB prescribed my anti-anxiety medicine.

    • Rachelle

      June 15, 2013 at 2:56 pm

      One point about the financials of smoking: a smoker doesn’t give a rat’s ass about how much it costs. It’s a fix. Just like a crack addict doesn’t care about how much their 8-ball costs, or the coke-head cares not about how much her blow costs, a smoker will turn a blind eye to the cost of her pack of smokes. Whether you’re a millionaire or a hundredaire, if a pack of smokes is what your body, and mind, are craving, you’ll cough it up. And I believe Veronique’s assumptions about her financials are based on Amanda’s own posts, so it’s fair game, IMHO.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 15, 2013 at 4:03 pm

      Yes, I got all of the information from Amanda’s own words. Thanks dude 😉 you’re a pretty smart chick. Have we met? Perhaps I should make you some cupcakes!

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 12:18 am

      Actually, it’s becoming a big thing that non-psychiatrists keep perscribing psyciatric medication. (Someone on, I want to say Blisstree, writes a lot about depression and who writes the scripts and so on). Some insurance companies will run you around a bit, but if you don’t have insurance and once you’re settled into meds that work, GPs often will just keep up with the antidepressants and send you to a psychiatrist if you need to change up your meds or dosing (at least that’s what they do at the low-fee clinic I go to). There are also programs that can help people pay for their hellishly expsensive medications. Ex. I take Cymbalta and have tried many other meds. Without insurance I’ll have to pay $500 a month. My doctor offered to look into a program for me that should help me get my meds at a severly reduced rate because I am not in a good place to try to change meds until I find something cheaper. But, that may just be in the San Francisco/Bay Area. I don’t know what kind of options are available elsewhere. But I bet you’d be suprised what you can have access too if you look into low-fee clinics in the area (who will take just about anyone).

    • Véronique Houde

      June 15, 2013 at 1:54 pm

      At the end of the day, these are just details that cover a huge point. The fact is that Amanda is (perhaps subconsciously) stating that she prefers the immediate buzz that a cigarette can provide her in order to feel better on a daily basis than get proper treatment (albeit sacrificing money – but perhaps less than she makes it out to seem, especially now that she’s proving that she CAN afford it if she’s investing in cigarettes). She is stating that she would rather take the risk of long-term damage to both her brain (since, as another poster explained, the long-term effect of nicotine is pretty bad for an anxious person and the withdrawal period can be long and difficult) and her lungs. She would rather send the message to her daughter that smoking is more important to her than showing her the example of how you get proper help for a medical disorder.

      She seems so afraid of trying to get help and risking it not working for her, as it has sometimes happened in the past, than she has chosen NOT to invest in a healthy physical and emotional future with her family, no matter what the short-term cost would be. She is beating around the bush, making little changes here and there without seeing a major change since she started suffering over a year ago. And in the meantime, her behaviour is having important consequences on her husband, her child, and the extended family that she has decided not to see as often.

      I know it sounds intense, but really, it comes down to that, whether she realizes it or not. Replace cigarettes with marijuana, alcohol, pain medication, etc, you would all be down her throat. Since cigarettes have been socially acceptable for so long, it’s way easier to accept this from a person. But it doesn’t make it any more healthy. And since Amanda puts herself out there, writing a special series on PPD, advocating for her choices, and setting the example for other women feeling depressed themselves, she has a certain responsibility to be honest about what she REALLY is doing to herself, and truthful as to the real vs. imagined cost of ACTUALLY doing what has been proven is effective as proper treatment. If she wanted for people to leave her alone, she shouldn’t put it out there for the world to see.

      At the end of the day, I’m not insulting anyone, I’m not even judging. I’m just stating what I see as pretty obvious. And judging by the reaction of the other readers to my comments, it seems like I’m not the only one to see the potential issues with her decisions.

    • Madame Ovaries

      June 15, 2013 at 3:42 pm

      I certainly agree with your conclusions about smoking and the superiority of simply getting psychological help over self-medicating. I myself HATE being around smokers and think it’s totally gross. Admittedly, I’m sensitive to situations where a reasonably intelligent adult has made a decision about something they are putting into their bodies and they end up getting lectured about it. (I had this boss that was on my ass constantly about my Coca Cola habit. I know it’a melting my insides, I just like the taste, OK?!) Of course, she put it out there and of course you have every right to comment if your think her conclusions are bad. I still think it’s judge-y. Sometimes judgement is justified. Sometimes I play devil’s advocate without even realizing it. Sometimes I get cranky when I missed my afternoon Coke…

    • Véronique Houde

      June 15, 2013 at 4:02 pm

      I understand your concern about the “judgy” factor. If I had said “you’re a horrible person” or “that’s the stupidest thing I’ve heard this week”, for sure, call me out on it! I’m here, expressing my opinion on an opinion blog in the comment section, where everyone discusses their thoughts on what is written. It’s great that we can debate and challenge each other. After all, I don’t think that the founders of the site put in a comments section only for us to cheer the bloggers on and say how great they are.

      I understand how annoying it is when people moralize you. I didn’t say that smoking is bad, I said it was interesting that she preferred medicating with cigarettes than with anti-depressants.

      And your boss sucks, I’m sorry. For sure, she has no right to butt into your business, you are, as you have stated, a fully grown adult. The difference between your situation and Amanda’s is that you are just going about your day, without asking for a running commentary on your life choices. Amanda however, is making her choices public on a very hot-topic, on a site that encourages discussion and debate.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 12:09 am

      To her defense, seeking treatment for mental health concerns is scary. It is often easier for clients to live with the problems and depression they know than try to explore the happiness they don’t. That being said, a therapist can help her through those feelings. As for the cost, I was in training last week learning how to talk to clients about fees and one person propsed that some people get more out of therapy if they have to work to find the money to invest. It’s saying “I’m worth giving something else up (say, cable or drinking), in order to get my mental health together”. I, myself, am working to get rid of cable so I can go to therapy. When I’m done with therapy (for a bit), then I can get cable back. Sometimes sacrifices have to be made.
      This is blatent self-medicating and I think she knows it. It is frightening to go to therapy, but that’s something she can talk to a therapist about.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 18, 2013 at 12:18 am

      Hey Psych Student,

      Those are great tricks that you’ve learned – tricks that I’ve used myself at many times in the past to help people that reach out to me for help. You seem very empathetic, and at the same time, in tuned to the issues that might be going on. I tend to agree with you, and these are all things that have been named in the past.

      So what do you do when you see something going on that worries you, but don’t seem to know what to do in order to help change the situation? I think that many readers are concerned for Amanda, and the effect that her blog posts (and her thoughts) might have on her, and others that read her blog. We often talk about cases of suicide and psychosis, and how we can prevent it before something dramatic happens. But really, it’s hard to know what you can and can’t do when it’s someone on the internet…

      Sometimes, it seems as though you have to watch someone hit rock bottom before they actually seek the help that they actually need. I am afraid that we are witnessing a train wreck about to happen. We all see signs that something could happen (albeit not necessarily suicide or murder!), but we are all caring people, and really want Amanda, and others who are suffering, to get better.

      At the end of the day, we are using our judgment to guide us in life. It can be positive and negative. I think that with this series, what comes off from the writing style is denial, fear and lots of self-labelling. I often times get the sense that Amanda tries to convince herself of things by writing them down and seeking validation… And unfortunately, we don’t really know how it affects her when she doesn’t get this validation.

      We could be wrong, but that is what happens when we read such a personal blog from someone we don’t know.

      In the end, bloggers are humans, yes. But as others have pointed out, we have the responsibility to our readers of trying our best to do what we have learned is right. And when they don’t do it, it leads to readers being uncomfortable. People look for people that they can relate to online, yes, but they also seek examples to follow as to how to best get help.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 10:59 pm

      Your concern, and the concern of other readers is so very wonderful and I hope that Amanda and other readers find the encouragement and the concern in the responses.
      I’m going to tell you the unfortunate truth of being a therapist. Before I do, I’m going to tell you how heartless this is going to sound and that, if someone said such things about my wife, I would probably yell at them and accuse them of being a heartless mother fucker. I (and all other people who want to save others, which is lots of people, and I imagine many of the readers) can only help people who ask for help (or if they are unlucky enough for me to stumble across them somewhere I can make unsolicited comments, bwahaha). If a client comes to me and says she/he is having a bad day and is considering self harm, then together we can implement a safety plan that includes people to call (family, friends, hotlines, hospitals), actions to take (calling people, relaxation techniques, etc.), and if needed, help them into hospitalization for a few days. Then, hopefully, I can help the client get through her/his hardest times and continue on.
      However, if a client comes to me, says their week is going fine, then goes home and kills her/himself, there’s nothing I can do about that, and there is nothing I could have done to save that client. Thankfully, I’ve never had that experience, and I *really* hope I never will. Some therapists do and it always feels like a huge loss. But we try to comfort ourselves with knowing that we can’t help someone who doesn’t admit they are having a hard time. That’s the case here. If Amanda (or other folks) aren’t willing to seek out treatment or listen to those who badger them (I finally sought help to calm the concerns of a friend and later hit even lower depression and only went to my therapist because my wife (then she was my girlfriend) was worried, drove me and walked me in. One time, I had a bad experience and she literally handed me off to my therapist because I didn’t want to go).
      Now, when it’s someone you care about and are concerned about “I can’t help someone who doesn’t want help” is a REALLY unacceptable answer. If someone tried to give me that runaround with my wife, they’d be in for an ass kicking. It’s super easy for me to put on my therapist hat and be calm because, while I care, I am willing to accept my limitations (something I wouldn’t do for, say, my wife or a close friend). I hope that anyone else who reads Amanda’s writing also reads the comments and sees the outpouring of support that comes for people who are having tough times and they seek the help they need. I do hope this didn’t all come across as too heartless. I am one of those people who has to actively avoid stray animals otherwise I will take them all. So I, like so very many other people, am prone to wanting to save everyone and everything. But my therapist hat allows me to detach a bit when I’m on the internet and calm.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 18, 2013 at 11:02 pm

      I don’t quite understand what you are trying to say… Could you clarify it for me?

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 11:58 pm

      Certainly. I can go on. Sorry about that. The point was, unfortunately, we (those in the helping profession, and generally everyone) can only help those that seek help. A suicidal person who says “I’m in trouble” can get the needed help. A suicidal person who stays quiet may, sadly, kill themselves and there is nothing I, or others, can do if they do not say anything.
      In general, all we, the readers of a blog, can hope to do to help Amanda is provide support, encouraging words, and suggestions. Hopefully, if other people who are in a similar position to Amanda, they will perhaps recognize themselves, read the comments, see the support and encouragement that is available and seek treatment. And that hope is the best we can hope for.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 12:04 am

      Mental health care doesn’t have to be expensive. Anyone can seek treatment at low-fee or no-fee clinics, especially if they live in large cities (though I don’t know where the author lives). Many clinics have fees on sliding scales based on income, so if she doens’t have much income, she can get low fees. She (or anyone) will likely get therapists in training who are carefully supervised. The end result is *really* cheap therapy that is often very good. We are so closely monitered that I might suggest that the treatment students offer may be better than some therapists who have been in the field a long time and don’t check in or consult (which is always advised by not requied). Since we are students (and not med students), we cannot perscribe medication and certainly don’t require someone to be on them. It may take a bit of searching, but mental health clinics are everywhere. Some therapy would likely do her some good.

    • Justme

      June 15, 2013 at 2:35 pm

      I had no problem with her story through PPD in the beginning…and I’m trying to still have compassion for her (despite her “I’m sorry I’m not sorry for thinking calling a cheerleader a ho in the yearbook is funny) but I also want people to help themselves.

    • Amanda Low

      June 17, 2013 at 9:53 pm

      I really screwed that apology up, because i meant it genuinely and not tongue in cheek. I got what i deserved in the comments and i was really, really upset at that whole situation.That first article was a product of low blood sugar, stress and bad judgment. I’m glad you’re still reading my other stuff : /

    • Justme

      June 17, 2013 at 10:30 pm

      I’m actually impressed that your are still are writing…I would have been cowering in the fetal position at the back of my closet while refusing to ever see the light of day again if I had faced that kind of backlash while struggling through my PPD.

      And the smoking…it’s obviously not ideal and I think you know that but I understand the urge and even the need to smoke. I was a smoker for six years and quit about five years ago because my boyfriend (now husband) told me he wouldn’t ever marry a smoker and then I got appendicitis and was in the hospital and at my parents house and yada, yada, yada…I quit cold turkey.

      BUT. I miss it. Not the smell of it, but the act. The sitting on my balcony of my bachelorette pad in complete solitude while reading a book or drinking a beer in between drags. In the past five years I’ve had to learn new coping mechanisms because I can’t light up in order to chase away the anxieties or stress. I have to sit I’m those uncomfortable feelings and just…..wait for them to subside.

      Anyways….,y main point is ‘good job’ for sticking your neck back out there and continuing to write. Obviously you are braver than I am….just look at my name.

    • Amanda Low

      June 17, 2013 at 10:38 pm

      Thank you 🙂 It wasn’t quite closet-fetal-position, but it was about a week of continuous hell. However, plenty of the comments here are actually giving me the nudge I need to get back on antidepressants…because I’m pretty sure that’s the only way I’ll ever be able to quit smoking again. I think I’m destined to be an on-again, off-again smoker forever…but the longer I can go between smoking phases, the better, and I’m pretty sure antidepressants will help. Maybe by the time I write my next piece I’ll have actually made some healthy progress.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 12:23 am

      Yay! I hope you’ll look into anitdepressants (or therapy, if you’d rather not medicate – or both, both is the best option if you can arrange it). Remember (and you may already know this), you may have to try out several different drugs before you find something that works well. I started on something that worked well, then kept uping the dose (with my doctor) until I maxed out. Then I tried something new, and was so restless I went back three days later and demanded something new. Then I tried something else that turned me into a zombie. Then I was on something else that worked for a while, then maxed it out. Now I’m on something else that works and added an anti-anxiety medication. So, it’s an adventure, but it can be worth it if you’re willing to keep trying to find something that works well with your system.

    • Amanda Low

      June 18, 2013 at 12:49 pm

      I am prepared to try a few…I know it’s lame, but I’m seriously concerned about gaining weight with antidepressants…I feel my most confident at the weight I’m at right now, and sadly cigarettes are part of what’s helping keep that in check.

    • Ptownsteveschick

      June 18, 2013 at 4:04 pm

      Warning Novel Ahead!
      The hardest part of depression is that you feel worthless, and hopeless, and those feelings are not going to help you advocate for yourself to find treatment if it isn’t easily available. And finding the right medication is terrifying sometimes. In the course of my treatment, I went from one med that didn’t do anything for me(prosac) to a med that made me worse and had the worst withdrawl ever (effexor) to finally finding the right one(wellbutrin)
      IF I didn’t have a totally supportive, if not slightly overbearing mother to force me into treatment, and a loving partner to keep me in check, IDK where I would be today. When I finally got my symptoms under control, it was incredible to look back and see how sick I was, without me even noticing.
      It is one of the hardest things to seek treatment. But now I have likened it to the simplest thing I can think of which I will share with you :If I broke my leg, I could wrap it up with an ace bandage and limp around on crutches for a few months until it healed however it was going to. Chances would be it would heal incorrectly and I would be left with pain and possibly lose the ability to walk correctly. I could ignore the pain, or drug it, but it would never leave unless I got the proper treatment, which would now be more involved and harder and more expensive than if I had gotten it fixed right away.
      Would I have some sort of pride with having “beaten” my broken leg alone? Maybe. Would my loved ones be happy/impressed with my constant pain and loss of life quality? Doubtful. Would I be able to be the best mother I could be if all I could do was limp around after my daughter? Nope.
      The same goes for persistent depression. Its hard, its scary, it takes a lot of work and you will probably feel even shittier than you do now before you start feeling better. But when you do, you will feel amazing. Things that are the hardest to hear when you are depressed are sometimes the things we need to hear the most. I wish you well Amanda and I hope you are able to find the things you need to get better.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 10:41 pm

      Perhaps you can find a therapist you like who won’t harp on you about quitting smoking. Then you can treat the depression with some therapy (avoiding meds) and keep the smoking and maybe in time you’ll find you need to smoke less. Or maybe you’ll feel better and keep smoking, but at least you’ll feel better. I am more inclined to encourage you to treat the depression (in one way or another) than to get you to stop smoking, since it would seem an especially hard thing to do if you’ve got nothing to replace it with.

    • Rachelle

      June 18, 2013 at 9:53 am

      If I could reach through the computer I’d give you a huge hug. Hopefully therapy will lessen the need for the type and duration of antidepressants. I know it did me a WORLD of good. Also reading one particular book changed my life (and I haven’t suffered from debilitating anxiety and depression since, and definitely have not needed Zoloft or Effexor since). I think my sister even mentioned reading it herself in here somewhere. If you’re curious, lemme know.

      I look forward to reading about your wins (and fails) throughout your road to recovery and discovery. Writing about what you’re going through is cathartic and helps your readers, too. And it’s really appreciated.

    • Amanda Low

      June 18, 2013 at 12:47 pm

      Thank you dearie 🙂 What book? I’m pretty convinced that I need medication if that’s the only way to quit smoking, but I love me some reading, too!

    • Rachelle

      June 18, 2013 at 12:55 pm

      It’s not a replacement, maybe just an interesting add-on to the help you’ll get for yourself.

      Ekhart Tolle’s “A New Earth”. And it might seem cheezy on the get-go, but it really helped me. (This link takes you to the online classes you can take while you read the book, sometimes I would read something and my face contorted into “saywhatnow?”-ness.)

      http://www.oprah.com/oprahsbookclub/Download-the-A-New-Earth-Web-Classes

    • Amanda Low

      June 18, 2013 at 1:00 pm

      Thank you! I will check that out!

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 12:20 am

      We certainly all have those days!

  6. Maria Guido

    June 14, 2013 at 11:51 am

    Give yourself a break. There are so many things that we do that are bad for us that have nothing to do with a particular vice. I’m sick and tired of everyone trying to be perfect all of the time. As long as you are not smoking in the house or around your child – I don’t see anything wrong with choosing to do it for a while. Yeah, it stinks, it’s gross, it’s bad for you – whatever. We’re not all perfect all the time and that’s okay.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 12:45 am

      That was one of the things I liked about her article – the willingness to give herself a break! No one is perfect. I imagine (since I don’t have kids yet, I can only guess) how frustrating it must be to hear other moms only tell you what’s going right in their life and making it sound like they are perfect and everything is easy. It’s great when parents are able to accept that they will make mistakes. They teach us therapists-in-training that we are *going* to make mistakes with clients. Often, those mistakes will help bring about great conversations and maybe even positive changes. The willingness to admit mistakes to clients and then move on is tremendously beneficial to the theraputic process. I imagine the same is true for parenting. Accept your mistakes, forgive yourself for them, then move on.

  7. Fabel

    June 14, 2013 at 11:52 am

    e-cigarettes are cool, & I’ve started keeping one in my car (which is usually when I get the urge to smoke, even though overall, I’m a very, very light smoker & can go for weeks without having one) BUT there’s still something more satisfying about an actual cigarette, that feels warm in your lungs, light in your hand, & needs to be ashed.

  8. Erica

    June 14, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    Im not judging you..I was a smoker as well. I quit after I decided to have children. BUT…My mom died of lung cancer when I was a little girl and it was beacause she couldn’t give up smoking. She died and left my sister and I motherless. It truly is mind over matter…I hope you find the will to quit soon, so that your children will have more time with you.

  9. Sarah

    June 14, 2013 at 1:03 pm

    I’m with all the people who recommend an e-cigarette! I’ve been using an ecig for almost two years, after a 15-year pack-and-a-half day habit. Regardless of how much you smoke an ecig, they’re waaay cheaper than smoking cigarettes. I’m a heavy vapor and still my vaping habit averages only about $50/month (I use a popular e-cig company from Hawaii). I occasionally smoke a real cigarette now and again, but then I can just go back to my e-cig. I’ve smoked about 15 cigarettes this year at social events and such. You will feel soooo much healthier and still get your nicotine without killing your lungs or stinking. And you can do it in the house without guilt, just keep your vaping juice out of your child’s reach.

  10. Amanda Gerber

    June 14, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    Get it girl! I’m a little sad I decided to read the comments KNOWING there would be people just ready to jump at you with their opinions on how terrible you are.

    I’m almost 5 months pregnant and I still think about a cigarette from time to time. Other times, I smell one and want to vomit (but I always want to vomit.)
    I have severe panic and anxiety disorder, and a 9 year old case of depression. My doctor and I have already talked about smoking after I have the baby, and she is very sympathetic to smoking a cigarette to calm myself down rather than taking pills every day.

    Hopefully the urges will be completely gone by the time there’s a baby here, but who knows? If not, I’ll smoke a cigarette because I can and they make me feel good.

    • Rachelle

      June 14, 2013 at 6:46 pm

      I’d love to tell you they completely disappear, but they don’t. They just fade away into the background and sometimes make a come back. But congrats on quitting girl! I hope you don’t ever feel the need to grab a cigarette to deal with stress and, sincerely, if you do, having dealt with both anxiety/depression and smoking, I’d be more than willing to be your bitch-friend (friend you bitch to when you really want a smoke) than hear that you turned back to smokes. Cause bitching and swearing actually has more benefits than smoking and the time it takes to bitch makes your urge go away.

    • Amanda Gerber

      June 14, 2013 at 9:22 pm

      That’s awesome. A bitch-friend is a necessity in these situations, and one I’d very much appreciate. You sound like you have some experience with the feeling.

    • Rachelle

      June 15, 2013 at 12:57 pm

      come grab my email on whatwouldshethink.com (in the contact us section). I’ll fo sho be your bitch-friend.

  11. Muggle

    June 14, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    Just don’t smoke around your kid. Not even in the car. I love my parents, but leaving home was the best thing I could have done for my asthma.

  12. Rachel Sea

    June 14, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    Quitting smoking was one of the hardest things I ever did, and the withdrawal period (whoever said it’s only three days long is a LIAR) was 6 kinds of hell. The only reason I haven’t gone back to smoking, even though I crave it every day, is because I don’t ever want to have to quit again.

    If I were still smoking I would go for an e-cigarette, because they don’t infuse your clothes, skin or hair with carcinogens, which means no worries about transferring carcinogens to your kid through touch.

  13. Zettai

    June 14, 2013 at 6:29 pm

    APPLAUSE.

  14. Rachelle

    June 14, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    I do share a few points in common with Amanda so I understand the internal battle she went through.

    Although I, too, quit smoking after 17 years when my husband and I decided to
    start trying to have kids, and I was a hardcore smoker and enjoyed being
    one. I attacked my quit by using information as an aid, instead of
    using a crutch. Yes, to this day I have urges (I had a VERY strong one
    just a week ago when going to meet a friend in a neighborhood I used to
    work in, walking right by my old corner store) and I will always be an
    ex-smoker and never a non-smoker, but I keep reminding myself that I’ve
    already invested too much time and effort to turn around now.

    I also have suffered from anxiety and severe depression in my past and my
    fear of sinking into PPD has been pretty intense recently with my stress
    levels getting pretty high. But I KNOW that the immediate serotonin
    release thanks to the thousands of toxic chemicals in one cigarette will
    NEVER replace the long-lasting effects of therapy and, when necessary,
    anti-depressants. The short releases of serotonin might relieve some
    stress on the short term, but by doing so you weaken your brain’s
    capacity to do it itself, which means you increase your chances of
    delving into deep depression. (Did you ever notice your smoking when you
    were in the midst of depression? You increase your intake. I know I
    did. And I know many people who also have.)

    This might sound harsh, but this article would NOT have received so much
    positive comments if you replaced the cigarettes with alcohol, but at
    the end of the day, it’s the same thing. You’re using alcohol as a crutch. Sorry, I meant cigarettes.

    I hope you get the help you need.

    (And,lastly, your children are 10 times more likely to become smokers when
    they see one of their parents smoking. I stole cigarettes from my Mom
    when I started smoking… That’s just another reason why I will bust my
    ASS to ensure I never start again. I don’t want to see my daughter doing
    to herself what I did to myself and what my own mother is still doing to herself.)

    • Rachelle

      June 14, 2013 at 6:51 pm

      God I so became the fuckin’ anti-smoker I absolutely hate. I’m just such a smoker and so worried I’ll start again one day (I quit almost 2 years ago) (and I’ve lost people to it) that reading all the information I read about it scared the shit out of me so I… yeah… I’m a sanctismoker.

  15. smoking is for suckers

    June 14, 2013 at 9:41 pm

    This Is The Damn Dumbest Thing I Have Ever Read.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 14, 2013 at 9:57 pm

      Capitalization for dummies. Eough said.

    • smoking is for dummies

      June 14, 2013 at 10:23 pm

      My Phone Auto Caps. You Can’t Spell. ENOUGH Said. The Author Is Putting Her Kid At Risk. Nothing Funny About That.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 14, 2013 at 10:24 pm

      Oh, do tell, how is she putting her child at risk exactly? And please, explain how you saw that I misspelled enough 😉 it seems fine to me!!!

    • selfish people smoke

      June 14, 2013 at 10:40 pm

      Congrats On Logging In And Fixing It. Maybe You’l Log In And Fix Your Comment To Include IS In The Appropriate Spot. ” Capitalization IS For Dummies.” She Is Putting Her Child At Risk For Second Hand Smoke, Being Orphaned, And Being Made Fun Of At School For Smelling. She Is Also Selfishly Expecting Her Child In 20 years To Take Care Of Her Cancer Ridden Body When She Should Instead Be Enjoying Her Adult Life.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 14, 2013 at 10:46 pm

      Wow, you’re adorable in your anger! I get the sense that you have personal experience with smoking and the effects it can have on a family. I do too. I can empathize with a lot of the things that you are writing. However, let’s make certain things clear: Amanda smokes outside and away from her daughter, she has specified this a few times already. Therefore, I don’t think that second hand smoke and smelling is an issue. I myself have a few issues with what she is struggling with, of which I have outlined below. You can go and read it if you haven’t. However, let’s have a nuanced and intelligent debate, where things are not black and white, eh? Smoking is not the end-all drama that you are painting it out to be.

      Oh, and, no I didn’t change my spelling after you called me on it, and I was actually referring to the series “… for dummies.”

      Oh. And there’s a way to fix your phone so that it stops auto-capping. You should get on that. Auto-capitalization makes most people dizzy. Just go into your Settings.

    • healthy outlets rock

      June 14, 2013 at 11:37 pm

      The Auto Cap Thing Is Super Annoying And Makes Me Dizzy Too . Sometimes It Does It, Sometimes It Doesn’t. Not A Setting Thing. Anyway, Not A Ton Of Personal Experience. Luckily, My Parents Weren’t Selfish That Way. But Honestly To Believe This Woman Doesn’t Smoke Around Her Kid Is Down Right Silly. And Even If She Didn’t That Smell Lingers. I actually Liked Your First Comment. Point Being, She Needs To Find A Better Outlet. A Healthy One.

  16. CrazyFor Kate

    June 14, 2013 at 10:27 pm

    Hey, when I was severely depressed I took up smoking, and only cigarettes could make me feel better. I’ve since quit, but choose not to beat myself up for something that happened in the past. Look into your options, but in the meantime don’t be hard on yourself.

  17. Not a parent. MockMyInsights.

    June 15, 2013 at 9:09 pm

    While I don’t have PPD, I do suffer from some pretty intense panic attacks and stress. Smoking an e-cig and taking a walk is one of the few things that help. So while we can all (even the author) agree that smoking is bad for you, it’s really hard to throw judgement around until you’ve been immobilized on a couch due to fear/panic. No one is saying somking is good. But honestly, I’d rather smoke an e-cig once or twice a month then take an anti-anxiety drug that rewires my brain. (No judgement, it’s just not for me.) Basically…I get it. Good for the author for being honest.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 16, 2013 at 12:26 am

      nicotine rewires your brain as much as an anti-depressant or anti-anxiety pill fyi. and yes, most of us talking about it have had experience with anxiety and depression.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 1:12 am

      You could also seek out therapy. That will rewire your brain (which needs it if you’re suffering from panic attacks) in a good way. I suggest finding someone who practices Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).

    • Ptownsteveschick

      June 18, 2013 at 4:07 pm

      Just another vote for CBT, it is amazing, saved my life, and instills a way to see your own warning signs in the future and nip them in the bud.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 11:02 pm

      I’m so glad to read that Ptownsteveschick! CBT may not work for everything (though don’t try to tell the APA that – it’s currently their most favorite thing!), but it is *great* for things like depression, anxiety, panic attacks, self harm behaviors, OCD, and stress. It’s a really good way to just make changes and move on, rather than exploring feelings. Exploring feelings has it’s place as well, but sometimes you just want to see changes and if a client is willing to do the work, then CBT can be a real lifesaver.

  18. Jessi

    June 16, 2013 at 1:42 am

    I smoked AT LEAST a pack a day from when I was 17 until I was 27. Quitting smoking was a huge struggle. It wasn’t the cravings that made it difficult- I used the patch, which made me nauseous and curbed any craving I may have had. My problem was how horribly addicted my body and MIND had become to smoking. Because I had smoked from such a young age, on through my twenties, I was completely dependent on smoking to quell my anger, ease my anxiety, comfort me. I had no idea how to behave or react to situations, emotionally. I basically had to relearn how to handle my emotions. I went through a solid 4 months of terrible mood swings and unprovoked fits of sobbing. Like Amanda, my mind didn’t feel “right” without all those chemicals running through my body.

    I saw positive changes too- the biggest being that I could climb stairs without losing my breath. So I started walking, running, entered races/ marathons, and completely transformed my body, my mind, my outlook on life. Honestly, I was doing a lot of stupid, dangerous shit before- I 100% believe that quitting smoking saved my life. I feel better now than I did then. Now I’m 34 and could totally kick my 25 year old self’s ass in a fight. And I have ZERO desire to smoke. Not even a drag. Not ever. Can’t stand the fuckers.

    Sorry to blow smoke up my own ass here (pun totally intended)- I guess I’m hoping that hearing success stories will inspire you to try quitting again. I don’t know what all you’ve tried, but I found that the patch worked, along with exercise (which is WAY more enjoyable if you can breath), eating healthier, and avoiding bars for a while. Just some suggestions.

    You said you cant afford antidepressants. I’d bet that the health problems and associated medical bills that inevitably come with a lifetime of smoking would be overwhelmingly more expensive.

    The cigarette is a dangerous, addicting drug- one of the worst, in my opinion- and quitting is a struggle. Don’t be afraid to seek help (primary docs DO prescribe antidepressants), and make sure you have a good support system who will be patient with you and, most importantly, not allow you to give up!

    Best of luck to you, mama 🙂

  19. K

    June 16, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    Have you read anything about third hand smoke? My doctor warned me about it when she asked about family members who smoke.

  20. Valeri Jones

    June 16, 2013 at 7:46 pm

    Ugh. Some of these comments really piss me off, even if they are trying to say them nicely. I just can’t imagine someone saying that to the face of someone who is a severe PPD sufferer.

    So you smoke. Big effing deal. You wanna know what they only thing I changed about my smoking habit was when I got pregnant with my son? I started smoking outside about a month and a half before he was born. I still don’t smoke in the house or in the car with him, but I still smoke. Like Maria said, being a parent (or just being a person) doesn’t mean being perfect all the time. And if anybody says they are, or even thinks it, they’re lying.

    What about the mom I called the cops on the other day for not having her 9 month old baby in a car seat AT ALL while driving 75 mph down the interstate? She passed me and I saw her baby just standing there in the seat, laughing and licking the window while she drove along. Or what about the hundreds of women in my city who get their babies snatched from them as soon as they leave the vagina by CPS because they can’t stop snorting pain pills while they’re pregnant? Judge them for awhile and leave Amanda alone. For all she’s been through, she’s an amazing mother, makes it very clear how much she loves her daughter, and is open and honest about her struggles with PPD and I think that’s awesome.

    Amanda – smoker or non, DO YOU! You are awesome. 🙂

    • Véronique Houde

      June 16, 2013 at 9:45 pm

      Hun, it’s not because people don’t agree that they’re being judgy. And who said anything about Amanda having SEVERE PPD? Until a doctor diagnoses it formerly like that, let’s leave the extreme labels aside, alright? And hey, if people can talk about their disagreements in a polite way, that is awesome!

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 1:09 am

      All the things I said about therapy, medication, and self-medicating, I *would* (and probably someday will) say to face of someone who is a severe PPD sufferer. But that may be the therapist in me. We have to tell people things they may not want to hear.

    • Valeri Jones

      June 18, 2013 at 9:52 pm

      But you’re a therapist, so I think that makes it a little bit different.

      I just know what it’s like to be in a volatile emotional state and how a simple comment made in passing can drag you to the depths of hell for weeks. I would hate to think that same thing could be happening to Amanda. I don’t know if it’s because I know what depression is like, but I always find myself getting defensive of her.

    • Véronique Houde

      June 18, 2013 at 11:06 pm

      The difference is that Amanda writes this blog on a website where there is expected to be feedback. If Amanda were walking around, going about her business and people kept giving her unsolicited advice, I would understand your point. However, Amanda is aware of the dynamic of the website, and actively participates in it. I would like to encourage you to see that most of the people here interact with each other as they would in real life and are quite decent, polite in their interactions. There are always the exceptions, but it’s always easier to ignore the “crazies” isn’t it? I can myself say that what I say here, I say in my personal life, and my professional life (which is in the helping field).

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 11:14 pm

      You’re right. I am in a different position and was saying different things (ex. I keep focusing on what she could do (therapy, meds, etc.) instead of what she shouldn’t do). But mostly I was being a mouthy brat. 😛 Sorry about that!

      I think it’s wonderful that you come to Amanda’s defense! I’m sure she appreciates it as well. Depression is tough and I too, know what it’s like to have one little comment, even one that should be neutral or nothing, can send you into a shame spiral and just *ruin* a day or a week.

      It can be tough to watch others make negative comments towards a writer. I tend to jump to defend Rebecca Eckler because everyone seems to bash on her. It’s great to be able to reframe behaviors and point out what benefit they serve in order to support others, especially those who are having a tough time like Amanda is. She’s not smoking with the intent of causing harm, she’s doing it so she can be a better mother, and that truly is awesome and she deserves credit for that! Being a mom is hard (no personal experience yet, but I’ve interacted with kids and they are tough) and it’s better to be an imperfect mother who embraces that and strives to do her best than to be a mother who beats herself up because she thinks she has to be perfect and is unable to do so. Perhaps what we need is a big, resounding, hurrah for moms in general! Hurrah!

  21. Anne

    June 16, 2013 at 11:49 pm

    I read this post a couple of days ago and was deeply bothered by it. I just re-read it and feel I need to comment. And yes, I’m going to be judgey. I think Amanda needs to take a break from blogging in a public forum. Not for her own sake but because of the message she is passing on to others who may be suffering from various forms of depression. It’s entirely up to Amanda how she decides to cope. But depression, be it PPD or other forms, is a serious medical issue and can be deadly. For the sufferer and sometimes, in the case of PPD, for the children of mothers who snap, lose their minds and harm their children. Amanda is choosing not to seek the appropriate medical help and justifying this in a variety of ways – finances, being afraid to fail again, previous mental holds, etc. Again, that is her personal choice. But when she chooses to blog about it in a series on a public, parenting blog that is supposed to follow the ups and downs of PPD, it is safe to assume that she will attract readers who are looking for advice and help with their own PPD. Readers may make the same choices as Amanda, as a result of being influenced by this column and reading the comments about not being hard on herself, nobody’s perfect, etc. Instead of seeking appropriate medical care, vulnerable readers may choose to self-medicate like Amanda, with deadly results when the depression deepens to psychosis and they choose to take their own lives or harm their children. Depression is a chemical imbalance in the brain. It often needs to be treated with medication, which only a trained medical professional should decide. Amanda… Take a break and get some help before you go off a cliff, or one of your readers does, because she decided not to seek help because you blog about fixing your issues yourself.

    • Psych Student

      June 18, 2013 at 1:02 am

      People very rarely just snap. There are various degress in PPD (as in other disorders). Women who have PPD with psychosis generally have symptoms (though they may not discuss them with others) of psychosis which are not automatically associated with PPD. One (according to the DSM-IV-TR – I haven’t read up on the DSM-V enough to comment on what it thinks) can suffer from depression without psychosis (common) or with psychosis (uncommon). But, if someone is suffering from something like PPD, we (therapists) don’t automatically assume that they are also suffering from psychosis (such as hearing or seeing something that isn’t there, having bizzare thoughts, etc.). Additionally, killing oneself of ones child doesn’t not mean the person was psychotic. They may have just been suicidal, which is a different diagnosis.
      Based on what Amanda has written (this is not a diagnosis!), it seems unlikely that she is going to go off a cliff literally or figuritively. Perhaps you would feel better if she added a disclaimer that said that each individual must decide for her/himself how to deal with mental distress and should seek help from psychologists and doctors if the distress is interfearing with everyday life.

      One last thing. It often takes people a while to get into therapy or get treatment for problems they have due to fear, misunderstanding, etc. While it would be great if everyone went to see a therapist the moment they realized they were distressed and it wasn’t going away, that’s not the way things work and mental disorders often make it even more difficult to seek help. And, other people reading her blog may actually find insight through it. Perhaps seeing their struggles manifest in another person will allow them to see the problem and seek appropriate treatment. Again, perhaps a disclaimer would help.

  22. Atalyahsmith

    June 17, 2013 at 2:43 am

  23. liz

    June 17, 2013 at 10:36 am

    How can you afford packs and packs of cigarettes and not antidepressants. Cigarettes are crazy expensive.

  24. Concerned Individual

    June 18, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    Hello, I am 19 years old.
    My mother chose the same path you did.
    She just passed away 3 months ago.
    She was diagnosed with lung cancer that ONLY SMOKERS can get.
    The doctor told her that ONLY SMOKERS have ever gotten that kind.
    Why don’t they tell you this?
    Money. It’s a tobacco INDUSTRY.
    Whatever world you live in where putting your children AND husband at risk for watching you suffer with cancer, and watching you LEAVE THEM EARLY is OKAY WITH YOU, is a horribly dangerous state to be in.
    I won’t lecture.
    Just put two and two together.
    Quit smoking. Your family will thank you
    ..and if they don’t, your health could lead you to passing away while your children, on both sides of you are holding your hand..

    Just like I held my mom’s.

    I had to quit too. I know it’s hard.
    It’s worth it.
    and, ITS NOT JUST FOR YOU.

    The Lord will be with you always.

    • Andrew

      October 23, 2013 at 5:36 am

      10 to 15% of lung cancer deaths are in never smokers. Certain types of lung cancer are more common in smokers versus non smokers and vice versa though there are no absolutes. Anyone with lungs can die from lung cancer, those who have smoked regularly are at an exorbitant risk compared to the rest of the population. There are no diseases that “only smokers” get though there are many that are drastically more prevalent in smokers. Look it up.

  25. Niala Wesley

    June 20, 2013 at 8:50 am

    Second hand smoke kills over 40,000 Americans a year (even higher percentage world wide). Maybe you should feel some guilt. And it doesn’t matter if you aren’t smoking right next to the person. Smoke travels. You could be outside and your kid could be in the house with the door and window closed and the toxic, cancerous fumes could still get in. Smoking isn’t just suicidal. It is homicidal. It’s not just a personal choice. It is actively harming others.

  26. Rachel Heston-Davis

    August 9, 2013 at 12:25 am

    The toddler years, in the middle of PPD, is probably not the time to be fighting a battle as big as quitting the smokes! I am in support of you doing this if it’s what you need. You know, as the kiddo gets older and you get more room to breathe, you may reevaluate and decide to try quitting again. Or maybe not. Either way, putting all kinds of pressure on yourself here in the middle of PPD is not the right time and place.

  27. Matt

    January 12, 2014 at 1:00 am

    I’m going to start a “daddyish” blog so I can publicly write about shit nobody should care about. If you earn money from it, even better. I’ve been raising my kid alone (yes alone… 100%, like a single mom with a penis) going on three years. I have A LOT to go on about.

    • Matt Again

      January 12, 2014 at 1:01 am

      Oh… I forgot to mention. I quit smoking three years ago and I’ve been wanting to start again really badly.

  28. Jodie

    February 15, 2014 at 9:30 pm

    Holy crap!!! Get off her arse. Who are you to judge? Yeah easy to throw stones when your not in someone’s shoes. Of course she should quit but for ex smokers or worse those who’ve never smoked yo get on their soapbox is nauseating. I’m a single mom , stressed beyond belief and I was able to quit after years of smoking but a month in I relapsed. I’m struggling to get back on track and beat myself up over it. But i will quit again and hope I’m not subjected to holier then thou comments like these ones 🙁 that will drive anyone to smoke!!

  29. J Momoney

    November 6, 2014 at 1:28 pm

    Some pics would be cool

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