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" Out of respect for Freedom and what she has done for you, and others, we ask that as your quit matures into comfort and you begin to find the structure here at Freedom too confining that you act in a mature manner that ensures that all new arrivals will be able to enjoy the same life saving message that Glory Week shared with you! "
Thank you, thank you, thank you! I know we don't say it nearly enough but to one amazing group of givers we offer a simple thanks!
Over the months and years many of you have invested mountains of time in reaching out while motivating, educating and supporting Freedom's newest generation and in return receive only the warmth of knowing that you'vee touched the life of a faceless brother or sister, in an ohhhhh sooooo special way. I wish there were more but the warmth you feel is truly justified as together you've been one awesome team!
You're touching and changing lives!
I just read Richard's diversion post to Parker's anything goes parade and the biggest smile came over me. You are one amazing collection of folks! Think about it - it isn't easy staying 100% focused 100% of the time on only one issue -dependency recovery - but each and every one of you do an utterly amazing job. Although clearly not enough, I know I speak for scores of dedicated givers who are devoted to helping the next generation of arrivals taste their own lasting freedom when together we say thank you, thank you, thank you for helping keep this very special place the amazing tool it is!
We're told every once in a while that we need to be more like other forums and let members do their own thing, that we're taking quitting far too seriously, or questioning how we can call ourselves Freedom when there is no freedom of general socialization, freedom of speech to engage in discussions about issues other than nicotine dependency recovery or prevention, no freedom to advertise, and absolutely no freedom to explore toying with the latest quick-fix magic cure.
They're right in every regard except one, we have no desire to try and be like anything other than what we are - an education, motivation and support tool that will always and forever put education first. We're a serious classroom first and foremost, we have to be as nicotine dependency is not some multiple choice exam where the price of failure is simply some bad grade on a report card. Here a failing grade - one puff - is often a death sentence. Above the door it says Freedom from Smoking, not freedom to exercise personal liberties.
Does the classroom have rules with some rather intense focus? Absolutely! Too serious? I don't think so. My second live clinic had fourteen participants. Two weeks later eleven had remained nicotine free and graduated. I just learned that one of the three who didn't graduate isn't doing well in her battle with lung cancer.
The more than four million graves being filled by tobacco each year contain the bodies of our bother and sister nicotine addicts, half having died during middle-age, each an average of 22.5 years early. If they had arrived here looking for a serious recovery tool and only clicked upon one or two threads before making their decision on whether to read further, what would they have found?
We thank each and everyone of you for ensuring that those who do arrive are greeted with the single-minded sense of serious purpose reflected by in the phrase "just one day at a time Never Take Another Puff!"
Thanks Linda. New members need to understand that part of Freedom's education process is in realizing that your needs will naturally change and evolve over time. It is very normal to begin feeling that the tremendous constant focus here, on the ABC's of nicotine dependency recovery, is simply too confining. We know that and we want you to know it too.
Although rough, I admit, it sort of equates to high school or even university graduates hanging around six-graders. If you like teaching or sharing what you've learned with the next generation of new arrivals it's fantastic and you'll fit right in. If you want to use Freedom as a wonderful resource to return to and recharge your batteries from time to time by interacting with those still in early recovery, you may not recognize all the new names but upon return but your common bond, education, wisdom, and your stats or color club will announce your arrival and hopefully always make you feel right at home.
But when the emerging you finds comfort, or recovery becomes manageable, and you develop an urge to use this learning and support institution as a social playground of sorts, or would like to see the focus ease up, we ask that you either resist the urge or alternatively take it to one of thousands of internet forums that don't have a life or death objective, that have few rules, and are designed for general socialization.
Freedom is unlike most other forums and we've each known so since day one. Other than celebrating color club accomplishments in which we all remain united by being just one puff away from relapse, there are no divisions or clubs in this forum along any political, religious, national or even social lines.
One of the unique beauties of this place is that we are an amazing education and support team united behind a single concept of helping each other remain nicotine-free today.
Almost none of Freedom's givers have time to respond to all the needs expressed here each day, together, as a team, we do a pretty awesome job of covering member needs. Our lives limits what each of us can give and many wonderful gifts are given each day by those who only have time for a single post or possibly two.
I know we don't say it enough but thank you, to each of you, for helping keep this forum the highly focused and valuable recovery resource that it was on the day that each of us arrived.Thank you Freedom!
The above photo is of Kim and Kelly, two loving sisters and givers here at Freedom who remind us of the importance of victory today. You can learn more about Kim at http://whyquit.com/whyquit/A_Kim.html
Happy Holidays Freedom!If it seems like activity here on the message board is a bit off, new arrivals fewer and that hardly any members are celebrating a Golden anniversary, welcome to December at Freedom where historically things have always tended to slow down a bit.Contrasted with January, by far Freedom's busiest month of all, December with its parties, traffic and gift shopping is a month fewer nicotine addicts dedicate themselves to starting the new year well into recovery. Instead, they tend to wait on the arrival of the new year as their not so subtle reminder that they should contemplate cessation.If you are just beginning this amazing temporary journey of adjustment take comfort in the fact that holiday emotions won't ever again be a trigger for you! You are breaking those feeding cues. In truth chemical withdrawal timing and sequencing during December is identical to every other month of the year. The differences are the number of excuses available to the junky mind or the rich field of psychological recovery opportunities available to the healing mind. We are what we think!We just wanted to let members know that we do continue to keep the forum's focus focused upon cessation during the holidays, that there is absolutely nothing wrong, what you're seeing is normal, and you need to get ready for our traditional early January flood of new members. Rest up your fingers as they'll need us!To stay on the healing side of our dependency requires following just one rule, no nicotine today, Never Take Another Puff!Happy Holidays Freedom!
With so many new members it's probably a good time for reflection upon the fact that your needs will gradually evolve while Freedom's mission remains the same. For every comfortable graduate leaving the back door, an embattled newbie enters the front.
Once the gradually emerging you begins growing comfortable it's very likely that'll you'll begin seeing this forum in an entirely different light. We want you to know that a feeling that things are beginning to seem far to structured is normal, expected a very natural part of the online recovery experience, and a good sign!
Please know that it's ok to take the celebration and bonds established here elsewhere to sites with almost no structure that are devoted to socializing. We are not against our members having a fantastic time and letting their hair down. If fact this site exists to help extend life expectancy so that you can make years of additional wonderful memories. What we need your help doing is maintaining the focus of the forum so as not to stray from the serious message present on the day you arrived.
The tone and tenor of this forum could not be what it is without the combined efforts of all. Awesome teamwork is highly evident over the past few days. Many of you have gone above and beyond. I'm sure you've caused many on the receiving end to feel obliged to do the same for the next generation. It's amazing how that works. Together we can!
Thank you Freedom and Happy New Year!
Thank You BSG(Bronze, Silver & Gold)Members!
Just a quick thanks to all of our BSG members who have helped make Freedom the nicotine dependency resource it is. Layer upon layer, generation upon generation, you've stepped forward and left your footprint upon the lives and life expectancy of others. What I hope you don't think is that we, the managers, have abandoned you or are not greatly appreciative of all you do. If we seem a bit less visible in recent weeks it isn't because we're not working beside you but that we are each dealing with increased demands upon our time resulting from the tremendous growth and success that each of you have helped foster.
Word is slowly spreading about this amazing place you've each helped create. There are now many days when the emails needing prompt attention just don't stop arriving. Imagine having Linda and Joanne's email boxes as they took care of the tremendous influx of our January members while insuring each was nicotine free and off to a solid start.
And if we think our demands have risen sharply they're nothing compared to the multitude of directions that Joel is being pulled. I don't know how he does it.
Thanks to each of you for picking-up the slack during January. It feels great to click upon a new member's thread and not only see that their expressed concern has been addressed and appropriate references given but that recovery concerns invisible to the untrained eye are also being caught and discussedd.
Think about it. It's almost frightening. Our BSG membership is very likely the most knowledgeable group of ex-smokers assembled together anywhere on the planet. Be proud of what you've done.
Like any institution of learning and support, the impact of your sharing, caring and teaching is being felt far far beyond your screen. To all of you amazing givers who've moved beyond the early challenges comforted by the focus concept of taking recovery just "one day at a time" we say thank you!! Remember, no matter how far our comfort carries us, our arrested dependency travels with us. To us it's as simple as .... Never Take Another Puff!
Please Read Our CourtesiesIf you're looking in and considering joining us here at Freedom please be sure and read Our Courtesies as Freedom is unlike any other cessation forum you may visit. We're a family oriented recovery site, discussions are limited to prevention and recovery related issues and we take our mission deadly serious. With smoking having a 50% adult kill rate we have to. Sincere thanks!
Thanks David. If we could start over again we'd probably change a few things, like the name to Freedom from Nicotine. I'm afraid that GSK's November assertion in Tobacco Control that 36.6% of all nicotine gum users are now chronic long-term users is just the beginning as more intense forms of nicotine delivery move into the market. It won't be too long before their speed and punch come close to the experience of inhaling nicotine laden smoke.
Again, we want to thank each of you for helping make Freedom more potent than you found it by making recovery experience a permanent part of the posting landscape.
Also a very special thanks to all our BSG givers. This place just wouldn't have been the same these past two months without your collective wisdom. We've had more WhyQuit & Freedom traffic in Jan. & Feb (over 3 million hits) than we had in all of 2001. Although wonderful, it can be a bit overwhelming at times.
They're right in every regard except one, we have no desire to try and be like anything other than what we are - an education, motivation and support tool that will always and forever put education first. We're a serious classroom first and foremost, we have to be as nicotine dependency is not some multiple choice exam where the price of failure is simply a bad grade on a report card. Here a failing grade - one puff - is very possibly a death sentence. Above the door it says Freedom from Smoking, not freedom to exercise personal liberties.
Do this forum's rules demand focus? Absolutely! Too serious? I don't think so. My second live clinic had fourteen participants. Two weeks later eleven had remained nicotine free and graduated. One of the three who didn't make it recently died from lung cancer. They tell us that 4.9 million of our brother and sister nicotine addicts smoked themselves to death last year. If they had arrived here looking for a serious recovery tool and only clicked upon one or two threads before making their decision on whether to read further, what would they have found?
We thank each and everyone of you for ensuring that those who do arrive are greeted with the single-minded sense of serious purpose reflected by in the phrase "just one day at a time allow the next breath to continue the healing."
As each new generation of members weave their glory into Freedom's ever expanding fabic this tool grows in value for new arrivals willing to read, learn and grow. If you're new to the group we strongly encourage you to explore, find and smile as you discover a most amazing fountain of wisdom that was deposited here with your arrival in mind. Like those that came before you, the glory is 100% yours!
Thanks Freedom!A sincere thanks to all of you for helping keep Freedom an achievement oriented forum whose sole objective is in helping every member stay nicotine free today! From the newest Newbie to the most seasoned Oldbie, together we form a powerful team! The fact that Freedom has no distracting or devisive social clubs or cliques evidences the seriousness and oneness with which each us take our mission! May every generation of new arrivals find the same dedicated spirit and focused support that thrived when we arrived!
NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF!
Middle-School Nurse Using Our Work
It may be difficult at times to understand Our Courtesies and Freedom's constant request that the language used in all posts be suitable for reading by children and teens. It has always been our dream that Freedom will grow in use as a window that our young can look into to learn what nicotine dependency and recovery are all about.Today we received the below e-mail that Joel thought it might help some to better appreciate our language concerns if shared. As WhyQuit gradually moves deeper into youth dependency prevention our contacts with youth groups continue to increase. We again thank each of you for keeping the language in your posts suitable for young and old alike.Breathe deep, hug hard, live long, Freedom! JohnI am a school nurse at a middle school, and I used your website to create a presentation on smoking prevention and smoking cessation. The students have responded even better than I expected. I want to thank you and the families who shared their stories for taking time to create this website. I really feel that some of these children will choose not to smoke because of your efforts. Thank you!
Yes, this is ...deadly serious businessThere was a time here at Freedom when tough love was the rule, when words of new members where seen as the eye to a junkie mind and each member did all they could to lay it on the line as openly, honestly and sometimes as bluntly as possible. With half of adult smokers smoking themselves to death, each an average of 5,000 days early, this is no place to take offense to the extremely serious business at hand.We wish it wasn't so serious, but it is. We wish we never again received word that another member or former member has died, but we will. We wish we had more time for pleasantries but most of us don't and many here give above and beyond, some for years.Everyone here is here to help you. We ask that you check your sensivities at the door as we do not expect our members to walk on eggs in teaching and supporting our members. In fact, in times of apparent crisis you'll often see them make some extremely creative arguments in trying to pull the member though. It may not pretty or appear kind, we're human and we make mistakes, but we promise you one thing, we'll do our best to help you stay free today.Millions of words but only one rule ... no nicotine today, Never Take Another Puff! John (Gold x5)
Freedom is DifferentIf you are a new arrival to Freedom, looking in and trying to compare what you see here to what you'll find at other forums it's really rather simple. This is one place on the Internet where the actively feeding nicotine addict gets no voice. We each already know most of the excuses used by the nicotine addict in order to justify that next fix and the time for games is over.
If you're looking for a fun filled place to make lots of new friends, a place that celebrates birthdays, anniversaries, hundreds of national or religious holidays, or where each new world current event gets discussion, focus or tribute, this isn't it.
But if you're looking for a place that attempts to take your freedom, health and life expectancy as seriously as the risks posed by your addiction warrant, then you're in the right place. The risk that continuing dependency upon smoking nicotine will permanently impair or cripple your mind and health is tremendous. The risk that smoking will deprive you of 13 to 14 years of life is 50%.
Only in a drug addict's mind is an exchange of 5,000 sunrises for one chemical a rational trade. If you're not afraid to explore an addict's mind then you're in the right place. We ask that you check your ego at the door as words are the only window we have to the junkie mind. Honesty may feel like tough love but do expect our members to notice and explore every potential denial minimization, rationalization and blame transference they see, even if wrong. It's what we do.
This can be the most amazing adventure you'll ever make if only you'll open your mind to the possibility that the real quitting took place on the day nicotine took control. Millions of words here at Freedom but all boil down to one rule that determines the outcome for all ... no nicotine today, Never Take Another Puff, Patch, Dip, Drink, ****, Lick or Chew!
We know we don't say it enough but without a half a decade of educated and caring givers here at Freedom -- givers whose insights live on long after their own personal challenge subsides -- this site would not have evolved into the empowering resource it is today. Simple truths seem to have a way of building on each other. Thank you Freedom!