GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)
GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)

December 14th, 2002, 12:50 am #31

while we tend to enjoy a "specialness" and/or a certain "bonding" with a member quitting the same time as us, or becoming members at the same time, it is more important to remember that our quits must be ours and ours alone.

Linda
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John (Gold)
John (Gold)

January 2nd, 2003, 10:24 pm #32

Imagine two infants trying to support
each other as they take their first steps.
Does that sound prudent?
Make sure that any buddy assisting you in learning to
walk already knows how to do so themselves!
Last edited by John (Gold) on April 14th, 2009, 3:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
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GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)
GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)

March 2nd, 2003, 8:14 am #33

I read in a post today where one new member said to another that they could support each other. While it's nice to have someone who's quit the same time as a friend, we strongly recommend at Freedom that you do not lean upon that person to help you with your quit. Listen to the people who are comfortable and understand what nicotine addiction is all about, for they are truly in the position to help you understand what you are going through. The way you feel when you first quit smoking is NOT the way it feels to be a comfortable ex smoker. So read and learn and read and learn and before you know it, you too will also be a comfortable ex smoker.

Linda
3 years plus
Last edited by GrumpyOMrsS (Gold) on April 14th, 2009, 3:53 am, edited 2 times in total.
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ladygrace
ladygrace

March 8th, 2003, 5:34 am #34

Thank you, Joel. I don't need a "buddy", I need a mentor. Someone older and wiser into their non smoking life than I am. Someone with experience and the abiltiy to guide me. Thank you for being such a great mentor to all of us.
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valeriescleanGOLD
valeriescleanGOLD

March 8th, 2003, 5:48 am #35

Ladygrace you are right on- I have always contested that EXPERIENCE was the greatest teacher. Every day of Freedom is reason to celebrate. Heres to Freedom's Bronze, Silver adnd Gold members! They SHOW us we can do this! Golds PROVE a year is possible. Silvers PROVE triggers are overcomable and Bronzes PROVE comfort awaits! Heres to LIFE!
Valerie
2 Months 6 Days
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BubblyDoodlebug Gold
BubblyDoodlebug Gold

June 9th, 2003, 8:02 pm #36

I don't have a buddy. I do have someone who has stopped smoking a few years ago who used to smoke lots more than I ever did. She is my boss and she is so supportive. When she found out I had quit she started crying. She said it scares her to see people smoke. She never gave me any advise about quitting but when I saw her cry for joy that really got to me. She also gave me a month party (a little early), she bought pizza and gave me gifts. The next day I was talking to a co-worker and told her I don't see how I could ever go back to smoking now after she gave me the party. I would feel like such a brat. I don't want to make her cry sad tears. I'm not looking for a buddy but I do keep my eye on the vets. posts because I do get a lot of wisdom reading them, I also read the newbies posts because it reminds me how hard it would be to start all over again. There are some people's posts here that I love to catch like Red Orris, she is so positive and honest and I like her style and Rickdabler seems so much fun, he makes not smoking such a cool thing to do and there are others, it is so neat to see people's personalities in their posts. Like Joel he is a caring person but also a no nonsense type of person. Taking on that nononsense attitude has kept me from relapsing, it took away the power of excuse making and the way we can justify our taking another puff. Taking on his attitude made me realize I had to be SERIOUS about never taking another puff. I knew coming into the group that I couldn't go through a trial or tribulation go back to smoking and then post about it and have everyone go on about how I can try again and baby me. Before joining the group I had to ask myself "Are you really ready to commit yourself to this because if not I'll be banished forever." Katherine
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OBob Gold
OBob Gold

June 10th, 2003, 2:54 am #37

Hi Katherine. Having an experienced mentor... or multiple mentors.... that's a good thing. It's different than the buddy-system issue in that your mentor(s) is/are experienced, and aren't going through all of the early quit issues at the same time as you (they've already passed that test). So, Yeah! Keep your mentors and learn. I had a couple of real-world... more examples than mentors.... when I first quit. It helped to watch them, and to use their inspiration in times of difficulty.

YQB,

Bob
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Lyverbyrd
Lyverbyrd

July 20th, 2003, 2:42 am #38

My mentors are all right here.
My partner has quit smoking, and is finding it difficult but perservering. His quit is very much separate from mine, but I'm going to try to get him to come here to post; I think he lurks here sometimes anyway.

The friend I mentioned earlier on in my posts here, the one who was adamant I couldn't do it; his quit has failed, I saw him smoking earlier today, but he hasn't told me.

I think this sort of mentoring system works better for me. I have all the support I need right here without the added complication of you all truly knowing who I am. You know what I'm going through, and where I'm heading, and it means that the tough love policy of freedom is going to be more effective than the possibility of someone I'm friends with massaging my ego if I decide to relapse.
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Joel
Joel

October 8th, 2003, 12:30 am #39

I just pulled the post from a member who was saying that she was having problems and wanted people to help. Her method of asking for help though was to ask people to write her off directly via email and off the board. We do not operate that way here at Freedom. There is a good chance when any member looks for this kind of one on one help that they are looking to form a buddy system. We offer all the help we can right here on the board. We want to ensure that anyone asking for support or more likely advice is getting advice that is medically and psychologically warranted and sound. Trying to take support into the background is not taking full advantage of what we really can do here to help at Freedom. If any member ever feels that there is something of a private matter that he or she does not wish to post on the board, drop any of the managers and email. We will be glad to help.

Joel
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John (Gold)
John (Gold)

February 15th, 2004, 12:59 am #40

No Crutches - Especially Ones Likely to Break
Freedom's almost 40% six-month continuous nicotine cessation rate may sound rather amazing and it may very likely be the highest Inter net recovery rate in the world, but it still means that the majority of all new members will relapse.

Although it's great to see new members encourage and support each other, it is extremely dangerous to psychologically link their quest to yours. Root for each other, pull for each other but also know with every fiber of your being that your recovery belongs only to you and that their relapse will not stop you from completing this temporary journey of adjustment and tasting lasting comfort.
There was always only one rule, no nicotine today! John
Last edited by John (Gold) on April 14th, 2009, 3:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
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carvoiero gold
carvoiero gold

April 23rd, 2004, 6:47 am #41

Hi John,
I just read your post about Freedom's 40% 6 month cessation rate. How can you tell - if I decided not to post any more it wouldn't necessarily mean I had gone back to nicotine - and you must have lots of successful quitters who just stop posting as they get on with their non smoking lives? I would have thought that - good though 40% is - the rate was even higher than that. I don't like to think that 'the majority
of all new members will relapse'. I want us all to be winners! Do you follow up on those that stop posting to find out if they relapsed?
Whatever your answers, I know that what you are all doing for me is fantastic and I am committed to being in the 40%!
Thank you.
Marion
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whynotmee1
whynotmee1

July 20th, 2004, 9:03 pm #42

Joel, Thanks for your advice on this one. I would have thought going threw something with someone else at the same time would be of benefit. Now, I see after reading this just what your talking about. I'm so glad I have your knowledge to turn to. I'm learning! I know I'm making mistakes, but turning those mistakes around and learning useful info is a important key to winning. Learning One Day at a Time.
DA-smokefree:11days
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Joel
Joel

December 31st, 2004, 6:47 am #43

Nobody here, whether a new quitter or a longer term quitter should be seeking help or assistance from our newest members. Newer members are here to learn and to work at securing their own quits and should not feel any responsibility or obligation to be helping others in the early stages of their quits. Newer members are here to learn and not to teach. The string The Teaching of Conventional Wisdom at Freedom also covers why newer member should not be the ones sought out to learn about how to sustain long-term success. At this point in time no new member has proven that he or she has mastered sustaining a quit. They will prove it to themselves and to us as they get more and more time behind them with their quits intact by having stuck with their commitments to never take another puff!

Joel
Last edited by Joel on April 14th, 2009, 4:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
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John (Gold)
John (Gold)

March 27th, 2005, 11:02 pm #44

The uneducated and unsupported quitter has roughly 1 in 20 odds (5%) of succeeding in remaining nicotine free for one year. Two new quitters buddying-up can all too easily become heavy reliance crutches for each other, which if one relapses spells relapse for both. Why lean upon a crutch with 95% odds of breaking? If we want to have another quitter support us in this journey it makes sense to select a person who does not face substantial odds of craving, caving and relapsing themselves.
Millions of words here at Freedom but just one guiding principle determining the outcome for all ... no nicotine today, Never Take Another Puff. John (Gold x5)
Last edited by John (Gold) on April 14th, 2009, 4:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joel
Joel

June 10th, 2005, 1:49 am #45

They are not cured but they are more secure and probably have a deeper understanding of not only what quitting is like, but more important what it is like not to be using after an extended time period. This is the message that the person in the middle of a quit needs to hear. Not just what today is like, they know that already. Talking with people only in this stage of the game is just sharing misery. What is more important for the person in withdrawal is to understand the importance of overcoming this time period. To hang in to see what next week, next month or even next year will be like, if they just don't smoke for these time periods. Who better to deliver this message than people off these amounts of time? Smokers who never quit smoking know what it is like to smoke. Smokers who are in the middle of their first week of quitting know what it is like to smoke and what it is like to be in withdrawal. But smokers who are off for longer time periods know what it is like to smoke, quit, and stay off. They know there is life after smoking, life after withdrawal. The people who even know more are those who have smoked, quit, went through withdrawal, stayed off months or maybe years, relapsed, quit again, and are now off a long time. They have more experience than anyone does and likely a deeper appreciation of the addiction and recognition of how precious and fragile their quit actually is. They still have to work at it, but it is among the most worthwhile work that they do any given day.
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John (Gold)
John (Gold)

January 14th, 2006, 10:30 pm #46

Many of us have lived this Joel lesson in prior quits. Every now and then we'll see it here at Freedom, where two quitters are leaning so heavily upon each other that when one encounters trouble they both do.
It is ok to quit with friends or loved ones. It is ok to offer them support and encouragement along the way. What is extremely riskly is in allowing them to become your key source of motivation.
In your mind, insulate yourself now. See yourself as being fully able to continue on regardless of whether or not they relapse. Picture yourself, if need be, being the leader and fully willing to go the distance to show your smoking friend or loved one that life without nicotine is entirely do-able, and far far easier than living an endless stream of mandatory chemical feedings.
Let this be your loving gift of you to you. Hold it close and protect it above all else.
John
Last edited by John (Gold) on April 14th, 2009, 4:19 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Joel
Joel

February 10th, 2006, 11:29 pm #47

Smokers who are in the middle of their first week of quitting know what it is like to smoke and what it is like to be in withdrawal. But smokers who are off for longer time periods know what it is like to smoke, quit, and stay off. They know there is life after smoking, life after withdrawal. The people who even know more are those who have smoked, quit, went through withdrawal, stayed off months or maybe years, relapsed, quit again, and are now off a long time. They have more experience than anyone does and likely a deeper appreciation of the addiction and recognition of how precious and fragile their quit actually is. They still have to work at it, but it is among the most worthwhile work that they do any given day.

These people are here, and for you newbies. I am using "newbie" here as people in the first few days of their quit, even if they have been here in the past, this is a new quit for them. If you want real support, turn to the longer-term ex-smokers. They will help you in ways that you may not yet be able to help each other. But take heart here, this is not saying that you won't be able to help others too. But your primary focus needs to be on your own quit now.

Keep in mind, you will only be a smoker in the middle of a quit for a short time period. Pretty soon you will be the seasoned veteran. When this happens, remember how past seasoned veterans helped you and pass along the support. This community should only grow larger over time. Staying to help others will help secure your own quit too. Many programs use the phrase, "To keep it, you have to give it away." No where is this more true than dealing with addictions. And never lose sight that smoking is an addiction. Whether today is your first day, your hundredth day or your thousandth day, the trick to beating your addiction for today is the same, never take another puff!

Hope everyone is having a good weekend.

Joel
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Joined: January 16th, 2003, 8:00 am

January 8th, 2007, 9:17 am #48

Freedom is a tool to help you with your quit. We are giving you an addiction education. But you need to keep these lessons with you, incorporate the education into your general knowledge and way of life. Your success is contingent on you and you alone. Your quit is contingent on only you remembering that to stay smoke free you must never take another puff!

Joel
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Joined: November 13th, 2008, 2:04 pm

January 29th, 2009, 1:27 am #49

I noticed some of the posts on this board have not been viewed by any member since we moved our site. This post had only two views. Now it is possible that new members are reading the materials at www.whyquit.com which is great. There are however numerous articles that we had at the old MSN board and now also at this new site that are not at the www.whyquit.com website. I will try to pop a few up a day for new members, but I do encourage people first joining to to through the boards that we have set up here and read through the articles. The more you read and understand, the more prepared you will be when encountering awkward times such as finding a pack or other kinds of unexpected triggers to stick to your personal commitment to never take another puff. Joel
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Joe J free
Joe J free

April 19th, 2010, 3:14 pm #50

From the 4th post in this string:

"To be honest, there are a lot of boards out there for people looking for this kind of social support. We are different here, we want the longer-term quitters to be the teachers and the "newbies" to be benefit from their successful experiences. Don't be mistaken, you won't be newbies for long and we will actively want your support to help new members joining very soon. But for now, Newbies should spend more time learning than supporting others or teaching.


Again, your time for teaching will come. And you will find it a rewarding experience as well as a great reinforcement in keeping your resolve strong to stay smoke free. But for now the important issue is freeing yourself of nicotine. For that goal we offer you the Freedom Board and welcome you all."

Joel
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FreedomNicotine
FreedomNicotine

May 1st, 2010, 2:34 pm #51

[font=GEORGIA, 'TIMES NEW ROMAN', TIMES, SERIF]From above:

There will be a natural tendency by people joining here today all at the same time to form internal support groups. This letter explains the pitfalls of "buddying up" with someone in the exact stage of quit as you are in yourself.

To be honest, there are a lot of boards out there for people looking for this kind of social support. We are different here, we want the longer-term quitters to be the teachers and the "newbies" to be benefit from their successful experiences. Don't be mistaken, you won't be newbies for long and we will actively want your support to help new members joining very soon. But for now, Newbies should spend more time learning than supporting others or teaching.

Again, your time for teaching will come. And you will find it a rewarding experience as well as a great reinforcement in keeping your resolve strong to stay smoke free. But for now the important issue is freeing yourself of nicotine. For that goal we offer you the Freedom Board and welcome you all.

[/font]
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Joined: November 13th, 2008, 2:04 pm

January 1st, 2011, 9:42 pm #52



I segmented a clip I shot for New Years 2011, creating this video discussing buddy systems. Sorry that it is a bit choppy but it covers the issues discussed in this string.
Last edited by Joel Spitzer on January 1st, 2011, 9:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: November 13th, 2008, 2:04 pm

January 3rd, 2011, 3:09 pm #53



New video discussing buddy systems in your real world as opposed to buddy systems here on the Freedom board.
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nessacoop
nessacoop

January 8th, 2011, 11:41 am #54

Thank you Joel for that video, I realized while watching it that I've always thought of smoking as my treat, my way of relaxing (after taking care of everyone else) Until I discovered this site I never knew - didn't want to know - how damaging smoking was. I ignored the Surgeon Generals warnings, my shortness of breath, sore throat, cough etc. Always made sure I had mints, perfume to disguise the fact that I smoked (I was so ashamed of my weakness) It's been a long time since smoking was acceptable behavior - anywhere, even in Europe! You made the point that one has to quit for oneself - & that is exactly why I decided to quit this time, I was sick of feeling inferior. I've done nothing to be ashamed of for five days, I know my breath/hair/clothes don't smell. I've been eating nothing but healthy food, I feel clean & virtuous. But - I couldn't do it without this site. This site is my buddy.
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FreedomNicotine
FreedomNicotine

January 8th, 2011, 2:54 pm #55

I am focusing on a theme today, quitting for yourself. This one letter is quite important. For our newer members, read all the responses, starting back at number 1 which is currently off the screen and needs to be accessed by clicking first. I am not sure everyone knows to do this with our longer threads, but generally if a thread is long it is because the topic warranted many responses and those responses are often as good if not better than the originial posts.
-Joel (from post #9 in this string)

Crutches to Quit Smoking
Post # 15 in that string:
Relying too heavily on anything, even Freedom itself can become a crutch. Don't see us as a crutch to quit, rather see us as a tool to help you understand what you have to do to keep your quit. You are the only important variable making or breaking your attempt. You will succeed forever as long as you always remember why you have chosen to never take another puff!

Joel
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