Are there "social smokers?"

Are there "social smokers?"

Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

April 21st, 2002, 4:38 am #1

Are there social smokers--yes there are. First thing to note though, no one here at Freedom was a social smoker--at least not when they finally quit smoking. We KNOW that because they showed up here at Freedom in the first place. A social smoker would not likely ever type the word "quitting" or "help on quitting" into a search engine. If a social smoker did by chance come upon our site, they would have read for a few minutes, realized none of this applies to them, and never have gone through our application process.



Now that we have established that the people here are not social smokers, who are the social smokers? Well it is not all the people who you think are social smokers. Although before I even address this, the term is almost wrong to start with. Social smoker makes about as much sense in some circles as social leper. There are some people who seem as if they can take it or leave it. I think the term that is used in some scientific communities for these kind of smokers is "chipper," I think used to describe people who smoke under 5 per day.



But not all of the people who can smoke that way are actually in control of their addiction per se. Some of these people NEED those one to four cigarettes. They don't think they do but they do. I meet them all the time in clinics. They are spouses of heavy smokers, who basically never bought cigarettes a day in their life. They "only" smoked them because they were around and to be with the spouse. But when the heavy smoking spouse all of a sudden gets sick and has to quit, the light smoking spouse enthusiastically volunteers to quit to for support. After all, they figured they never really need these cigarettes anyway, quitting will be no big deal.



These people are OFTEN in for a real surprise. They will find themselves buying their first pack in their lives, and going through a worse time than the heavy smoking spouse. Often these people have full blown withdrawals and often, they don't make it ending up being the sole smoker left in the family. They were not "social smokers" after all, they were full blown addicts who were just at a lower tolerance level than most others. But there is no guarantee that over time their tolerance would not have increased and resulted in them turning into heavy smokers who would be viewed as full-fledged smokers by all around them.



The only way for these people to quit and stay off is the same for people who smoke 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 or even one hundred cigarettes a day. It is still by understanding to take and keep control over the nicotine addiction entails always knowing to never take another puff!



Joel


Related string: The relapse of a "social smoker"


Last edited by Joel on June 20th, 2013, 5:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

April 21st, 2002, 8:48 am #2

Hi Joel, one of my co-workers used to smoke a couple of cigs every day, became pregnant and stopped. I mentioned that it must not have been a terribly big deal beause she was just a "social smoker". No, she told me, it annoyed her no end to give up her few cigs a day. She liked to smoke at the end of the day with a glass of wine as a reward.

My boss in Manhattan was also a "social smoker". He liked to have one on the way to the train station in the morning, and when he was out drinking with his buddies or after a good meal. Well, his buddies all quit, and at the ripe old age of 50+, he found himself buying a pack of cigs at downtown Manhattan prices. He questioned the sanity of this, and so he has also quit.

A couple of nights ago, I was outside with my sister-in-law, and we were talking about our Quits. I asked her what do all smokers think they really want? She didn't guess so I told her, "To be Social Smokers." Had a big laugh at that. Realize now how absurd the notion is. Thanks for your insight.

Janet
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Joined: December 19th, 2008, 12:02 am

June 6th, 2002, 1:52 am #3

Hi Joel:

I hear about social smokers all the time....

There are no such thing as social smokers... They are addicts just like us...

I use to know this girl I went to college with. She would only smoke when she went out to bars on the weekends. She would smoke about a pack a night at least...Than she wouldn't smoke all week long because she was on the track team and ran. I don't think that she ever quit though and I wonder if she ever started to smoke full fledge... I was always jelous that she could do this but now I realize that she didn't have it any better than me.

Judy
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:58 pm

July 18th, 2002, 10:32 am #4

Hi all...This was always an interesting concept to me...being able to quit any time I wanted...wouldn't that be great!

I know a guy who says his wife can quit anytime she wants to...yeah, right...tell me another one! Neither one of them realize the power of this addiction...Many people don't!!! I was once one of the many!

Thank you everyone at Freedom for your support!

De
Day 10!
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Joined: January 12th, 2009, 11:35 pm

August 11th, 2002, 9:21 am #5

<<There are no such thing as social smokers... They are addicts just like us...<<
Wishing doesn't make it true. There are social smokers just like there are social drinkers. Not everyone who drinks is an alcoholic, and not everyone who smokes is an addict. I know at least 6 people who smoke maybe a pack a year...if that. And I'm the same way with booze.
The point is, it may be politically correct to say there are no social smokers, and it may not make us addicts happy to hear it...but yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus and there are social smokers.
Gary
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

August 11th, 2002, 9:35 am #6

Hi Gary, I think if you re-read the post, you will realize that noone here is denying the existence of "social smokers". The message is : 1) we at Freedom aren't social smokers, and 2) some of the people who claim to be social smokers are really addicts.

There are all different kinds of smokers, I suppose. Closet Smokers, Social Smokers, Ex-Smokers, Light Smokers, Heavy Smokers! Well, with the exception of the true "Social Smokers", we are all addicted smokers.

yqs, Janet
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

September 30th, 2002, 9:11 pm #7

Hi,

I would like to just enter in a distinction between ex-Smokers and the other types of smokers.

An ex-smokers does not intake nicotine at all; all the others would intake nicotine in some degree.

Even though it is true that an ex-smoker can fall in the nico trap again, he is not in the trap like the other types of smokers.

The ex-smokers is at different level of awareness concerning its addiction and he's taken action against it.

Never Take Another Puff is the rule, and this will set you FREE.

Quit for: 1 Week 3 Days 23 Hours 39 Minutes 19 Seconds. NOT smoked 197 cigarettes, for a savings of €51.51. Life Saved: 16 Hours 25 Minutes.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

December 29th, 2002, 12:01 am #8

I suspect over the New Years you may encounter people who you are assuming are social smokers. These people may be or may not be in control of their smoking but just know that you are not these people. You are you--a person who searched out a website to help you quit because you felt that you were incapable of quitting on your own. The feeling that led you to us was caused by the simple fact that you were addicted to nicotine and didn't know what you needed to do to take control back.

While you may not be physiologically or even psychologically craving nicotine now, you must still realize that you are still addicted to this drug. The only way to insure that you are never trapped in the grip of active smoking or active nicotine withdrawal again stay focused on why you have committed to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

February 9th, 2003, 6:36 am #9

Morning everyone. These postings have made me think of a friend who I have always regarded as a "social smoker" When I smoked, I actually envied them because they could go through the day with only one cigarette or a day without or we could have a huge night on the drink and ****, and then they wouldn't smoke smoke for 2-3 days. (my friend also has a 'habit' clearing of the throat) But not me, I would be lighting up the next day, regardless of raw throat and hangover.

Well it turns out that my friend is now smoking a lot more than before. Just from what I have read here at Freedom, I gather their addiction was no less than mine, and maybe that I was disillusioned into thinking they were a only an occasional "social smoker"
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Joined: January 7th, 2009, 8:15 pm

February 26th, 2003, 4:50 am #10

I was pointed to this thread in response to a post of mine. Wow, this is so true. I guess I always considered myself a "social smoker". I would quit for a couple of months, then start for a couple, then quit, start, quit... Strange cycle. I only smoked a max of 7 a day. It was just about a year ago that I realized, hey you can't just quit for good, because you are truely addicted and it was that first 2 or 3 cigs after a quit that got me right back to the 7 a day.

This site has given me so much insite as to what is going on and how to finally beat this addiction once a for all. And it is true... even though I only smoked a few a day, I experienced the same withdrawal symptoms that many on this site described.

Free for 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours 19 min, 45 sec.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

May 13th, 2003, 6:03 am #11

Hi joel
I was that social smoker and then a secret smoker,i started with borrowing cigarettes and then the next day i would buy a pack but smoke in secret.The next stage was buying my own when going out at weekends,after all it was,nt polite to keep borrowing.My friends wife is a so called social smoker but guess what i seen her take one on a monday after all it had been a stressful day.I don,t believe that smoking comes with a part time membership because in time the membership becomes full time.I think that social smoker faces constant withdrawal and i have even witnessed someone socialise more to feed their addiction.
Rickdabler 2 months 3 days 19hrs happily nicotine free.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

May 13th, 2003, 8:50 pm #12

You may not like the new clean indoor-air laws outlawing selective indoor burning that are quickly creeping across the globe, but as the below article points out, many who "thought" they were social smokers are finding out that come feeding time ... it's time to feed! More hard cold freezing reality might tend to expose a few more of the lies accompanying each destructive puff of nicotine! Looks like nicotine dependent "stars" are going to be getting to know their fans a better! John


Celebs smoked out of bars
By Donna Freydkin, special for USA TODAY
May 12, 2003

NEW YORK - This spring and summer, celeb-hungry gawkers can skip the velvet-roped clubs and cruise the streets for some nighttime stargazing.
That's because Manhattan's new smoking ban, which went into ironclad effect on April 30 (after a 30-day grace period) and prohibits cigarettes in bars and restaurants with very few exceptions, is forcing many nicotine-craving A-listers out of their private VIP rooms and on to very public city corners for their smoke breaks. It's why John Malkovich, who lives in smoker-friendly France, was forced to leave the premiere of his directorial debut TheDancer Upstairs on April 29 and inhale outside the Bryant Park Hotel on an unseasonably cold spring evening.

A day earlier at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's gala for the Costume Institute, supermodel Gisele Bundchen stepped out for numerous tobacco breaks, at times joined by Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter, one of those adamantly opposed to the ban.

"I can't stand it," Carter says. "It ignores the vanity of New York. Michael Bloomberg has forgotten what it's like to be 25 in New York and that most people want to go out and drink and smoke at the end of the day."

But many are still doing that - just outdoors. On March 31, the very day the smoking ban first went into effect, Colin Farrell puffed on a cigarette outside the New York premiere of his thriller Phone Booth. Even pop star Britney Spears isn't above the law - she was asked to put out her cigarette at Underbar and Show nightspots recently.

Smokin' Sci Fi Channel host and 90210 alum Shannen Doherty lights up outside NoHo's trendy eatery Serafina, where she's a regular, the restaurant's publicist says.

"Now that the good weather's here, it's not so bad. People can go outside and have a cigarette," says Blondie frontwoman and downtown Manhattan resident Deborah Harry. "It does make the inside places much more comfortable, and maybe it'll help a lot of people to quit smoking."

Still, not all non-smokers are down with the new rules. "I think it's ridiculous," Gina Gershon says. "It's not right. You should have a smoking section inside, but right now, people are all outside of empty clubs and bars."

Smoking has been prohibited at city restaurants with more than 35 seats since 1995, but stand-alone bars were exempt from the ban, until Bloomberg's new law took effect. Now, owners are subjected to fines of $200 to $400 for a first offense and $500 to $1,000 for a second offense. The licenses of repeat offenders can be revoked, and that's why bars mean business when they tell you to put out that cigarette.

But while some celebs lament the new law, others couldn't be happier.

"I've given up smoking, so it's quite good for me, quite handy," says Down With Love star Ewan McGregor, who was in town for a visit.
© Copyright 2003 USA TODAY

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Joined: January 7th, 2009, 7:38 pm

May 14th, 2003, 1:29 pm #13

Joel,

I have a sister who I always classed as a "social smoker" - smoking about 5 per day, unless some big social event was on where she would smoke like a chimney like the rest of us. She has now tried to quit several times unsuccessfully.

My question is this. When I stopped I have noticed wonderful things happening, taste, smell, money - you know all the good stuff. However because of her low consumption, she didn't seem to get these positive gains - obviously because she wasn't suffering all that much while she was smoking. Any articles or advice I can share with her and try to convince her to have another go?

Kath.

I have been quit for 1 Month, 5 Days and 48 minutes (35 days). I have saved $441.42 by not smoking 1,226 cigarettes. I have saved 4 Days, 6 hours and 10 minutes of my life.
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Joined: January 7th, 2009, 7:01 pm

January 10th, 2004, 6:24 am #14

Joel,
Around the beach here, those referred to as social smokers are the ones who smoke very little if any all day. Then, in the evening from cocktail hour on, they chain smoke for hours. I understand about alcohol expediting expulsion of nicotine via kidneys. The evening nicotine frenzy appears much like a nicotine "pig out". These people do carry their on cigs. The "bummers" do not. I know people who have bummed cigarettes at parties for many years. I've noticed that they are really on again, off again smokers. We just usually see them at parties. There are a lot of angry people around in perpetual withdrawal expressing their rage. The human environment is no longer supportive of the addiction. Smoking among other things is most inconvenient. I guess it doesn't matter what class or category we filed ourselves as addicts as long as we can convince ourselves to never take another puff.
I have been quit for 5 Days, 19 hours, 54 minutes and 39 seconds (5 days). I have saved $26.23 by not smoking 174 cigarettes. I have saved 14 hours and 30 minutes of my life.
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Joined: December 19th, 2008, 1:47 am

January 17th, 2004, 1:29 pm #15

Hello Everyone!

I was one of these smokers who could puff under five a day, but my addiction is obvious and apparent to me! If I did not have each ciggarette as planned I would get more than agitated. My nicotine schedule was very rigid . And this incldued right after yoga. Before a bath. When on the phone. If upset or happy. If I was unable to ingest nico-drug at EXACTLY at these times, I was a monster.

And when I went out or was creating I'd suddenly smoke more and more.

Then, of course the next day I'd taper down again to make up for my excess.

Really ridiculous and took a lot of energy out of my every waking minute, for it seemed I was always worrying about when I would have my next cigg and where.

I had been wondering in these early days of my quit if perhaps I'm not really a smoker (my mind attempting to rationalize my addiction, obviously). I've been trying to convince myself in various ways that I could probably have just one someday. However, I've tried to quit again and again and it was ALWAYS this 'social' smoke that got me back into my nicotine habit. And believe me, even though my intake was not up to a pack the intensity of my addiction was just as severe. I started smoking at the age of 12. And now I'm almost 40. So for 28 years I've focused all this energy on smoking (even when I wasn't having a cigg).

I'm really looking forward to being able to think on other things.

I pray for the strength and knowledge and support to do so.

Blessings,

Clarity who is ten daze into freedom and happy that (at least) 70 ciggs were not smoked.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:59 pm

February 9th, 2004, 6:35 am #16

Hello, I know this is an older thread but I would like to address it. I was the exact kind of smoker Joel is speaking of here. I could easily smoke only three or five cigarettes in a day. For years this is how I smoked. Mostly because I was a closet smoker. Also more than 6 or 7 cigarettes would make my throat sore and give me a headache. How foolish could I have been to keep smoking in the first place??

BUT.............................. I did and I always felt quitting was even harder for me because I was always in a constant state of withdrawal even when I was smoking so even withdrawal felt normal. How sick is that? So I am glad to see my quit feelings validated. I also blew a 4 year quit from thinking I could do a social puff. No it just can not happen. Now with the education from this site I know that and this is why this quit for me is so different. I know this time it is for real and how to keep it for real. Not that I even have craves anymore.

Gosh I did have a smoking dream after three years of being quit and that was a shock. It was so real and I was so upset with myself. The cigarette did not taste good and my husband caught me smoking it and when I woke up I was crying so hard I could not go back to sleep . Even though I knew it was a dream. I fretted over this dream for a few days.

So not taking any more time on this. Just adding my 2 cents worth on a social smoker and their addictions. Thanks Joel :^) Again!!

Chris 3 Years 3 Months 8 Days Woo Hoo :^)))))))))))))))))))
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

October 10th, 2006, 9:08 am #17

I spoke with a classmate who said "I only smoke, when I drive." When I asked how often she drove, she answered "Every day."

I have a friend who lectured me about smoking ten years ago when we went to school together. Since then, he became an MD and a smoker. Some only smoke when they drink, some only on weekends, they all seem to have ways to describe their "non-habit."

I used to be so jealous of people who are able to be social smokers. This jealousy is really just a way of legitamizing the fantasy of one=one. This feeling is nothing more than a simple craving to me now.

I like being a nonsmoker, it feels like a credential. A credential with fancier perks than "social smoker" or "occasional smoker."

Rick - Free and Healing for Two Months, Eight Days, 15 Hours and 7 Minutes.
I have saved $282.81 by not smoking 1253 cigarettes.
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Joined: January 16th, 2003, 8:00 am

November 4th, 2006, 8:06 am #18

None of us knows which cigarette will be the one which will trigger deadly changes in our bodies.

Why do we tend to think that "social smoking" is okay and safe and nothing to worry about?

Never take another puff!
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

November 10th, 2006, 12:12 am #19

New video today that fits into this string:


http://www.youtube.com/v/192oAUdsCVI&ve ... tube_gdata
Last edited by Joel on June 20th, 2013, 5:44 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Joined: December 19th, 2008, 12:35 am

April 20th, 2007, 7:12 pm #20

I have a friend like that. It drives me nuts. She has a puff off other peoples smokes now and then at gatherings, but other then that, nothing. We could all be sitting around for hours smoking away and she deosn't have any, then once in a blue moon she'll take a puff. But she's never even bought a pack!

I don't think I'm jealous, but more annoyed that I'm an addict. I never thought of myself as an addict. Not till now. My whole body's going through some crazy stuff right now as part of withdrawl.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

April 20th, 2007, 8:55 pm #21

Debbie,

Does that drive you nuts?
Let's say there is a group of cocaine addicts who use every day.
Your friend visits them so now and then and she also takes some cocaine so now and then.
Does that make you jealous? That's what your friend is doing.
It won't take that long before she gets addicted. Have a good look at her, she is the same as us before we got addicted. It starts with bumming some cigarettes here and there and it ends with buying and smoking 20/40/60/80 per day. You are looking in the mirror Debbie. Congratulations with your quit!

Frits (4 months+)
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

April 20th, 2007, 11:01 pm #22

Debbie wrote:
"I have a friend like that. It drives me nuts."
Frits wrote
"It won't take that long before she gets addicted. "
Actually, Debbie's friend may not get addicted. Maybe she is one of those true exceptions to the rule. To tell Debbie now that it won't take long for her to be addicted is going to possibly cause Debbie to lose a certain degree of respect for the credibility of things written on this board. Debbie's friend may have been doing this for decades now and to make a blanket statement that she will be addicted and smoking 20, 40, 60 or more a day before long is going to give Debbie and others who read here the idea that we either don't know what we are talking about here at Freedom or that we are exaggerating the risks of addiction by applying it to ALL people who use.

As this article clearly states, there are truly some people who are social or controlled smokers. It is a small minority of people, but they do exist. Again though, they are not people who are likely members or readers at our board. A true social smoker would likely never see our board even once for they would not likely ever look for any information about help for quitting smoking.

As the original post in this string says:
Are there social smokers--yes there are. First thing to note though, no one here at Freedom was a social smoker--at least not when they finally quit smoking. We KNOW that because they showed up here at Freedom in the first place. A social smoker would not likely ever type the word "quitting" or "help on quitting" into a search engine. If a social smoker did by chance come upon our site, they would have read for a few minutes, realized none of this applies to them, and never have gone through our application process.



Now that we have established that the people here are not social smokers, who are the social smokers? Well it is not all the people who you think are social smokers. Although before I even address this, the term is almost wrong to start with. Social smoker makes about as much sense in some circles as social leper. There are some people who seem as if they can take it or leave it. I think the term that is used in some scientific communities for these kind of smokers is "chipper," I think used to describe people who smoke under 5 per day.

But not all of the people who can smoke that way are actually in control of their addiction per se. Some of these people NEED those one to four cigarettes. They don't think they do but they do. I meet them all the time in clinics. They are spouses of heavy smokers, who basically never bought cigarettes a day in their life. They "only" smoked them because they were around and to be with the spouse. But when the heavy smoking spouse all of a sudden gets sick and has to quit, the light smoking spouse enthusiastically volunteers to quit to for support. After all, they figured they never really need these cigarettes anyway, quitting will be no big deal.

These people are OFTEN in for a real surprise. They will find themselves buying their first pack in their lives, and going through a worse time than the heavy smoking spouse. Often these people have full blown withdrawals and often, they don't make it ending up being the sole smoker left in the family. They were not "social smokers" after all, they were full blown addicts who were just at a lower tolerance level than most others. But there is no guarantee that over time their tolerance would not have increased and resulted in them turning into heavy smokers who would be viewed as full-fledged smokers by all around them.

The only way for these people to quit and stay off is the same for people who smoke 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 or even one hundred cigarettes a day. It is still by understanding to take and keep control over the nicotine addiction entails always knowing to never take another puff!
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Joined: January 16th, 2003, 8:00 am

January 7th, 2008, 7:03 am #23

Last edited by Sal GOLD.ffn on March 7th, 2009, 4:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: December 18th, 2008, 11:57 pm

June 7th, 2008, 10:26 pm #24

Related video:
Video Title
Dial-Up
HS/BB
MP3 Audio
Length
Added
"I don't need to smoke" 3.86mb 11.54mb 4.75mb 10:29 11/09/06
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Joined: March 4th, 2010, 2:55 pm

March 9th, 2010, 5:29 pm #25

For anyone who has been a regular smoker, I would venture to say that it is not possible to be a "social smoker."  Anyone reading this should forget that concept right now, because addiction does not work that way.  I know I have tried to do this countless times throughout my addiction to cigarrettes--just smoke when I'm around my smoking friends, smoke occasionally, etc.  It most certainly does not work for me!!  I was usually able to pull it off for a little while, sometimes even a month or two, but it always led to me buying my own pack and smoking regularly.  I am glad I am not trying to fool myself anymore and have realized that one puff=countless more.  Addicts are addicts for life, and should never test their addiction.       
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