Reading at other quit smoking sites

Reading at other quit smoking sites

Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

02 Jan 2006, 23:55 #1

For our members and readers
who also read or participate
at other quit smoking sites
We have members and readers here at Freedom who also read or participate at other online support sites. Recently one of our members posed a question at the board as to why a specific member at another site was still having such a hard time even though the person was off smoking for several months. Actually, we took the post off the board at Freedom because it specifically copied and pasted the post from the member at the other site and we do not allow posts from other sites at our board without prior permission of our managers.

The question though touches on a few important concepts that would be beneficial for us to address for people who do read at other sites. There are some real limitations to reported quit times at most other boards because quit meters at other sites do not often reflect how long the person is actually off nicotine. Some people may still be on NRT or have just very recently got off the nicotine product even though their meters may show a much longer "quit" time.

Then there are the constant discussions that go on at other sites as to whether people should reset their quit meters if they only have a few cigarettes, or one cigarette, or a puff. The debate of what is a slip and what is a relapse is standard and daily fare at most sites. When it comes down to it you just don't know the accuracy of quit time periods from anyone at most sites by simply reading their quit meters.

We have a string at Freedom titled Tell a newbie how how many seconds a day you still want a cigarette. This is an extremely important string. If you go back and read through the hundreds of responses from people who are off for weeks, months, or even years and you will get a real appreciation of just how infrequent smoking thoughts really are for people who totally break free from nicotine. If you were to pose the exact same question at other sites that have the limitations of variable interpretations of what it means to be truly quit you would likely see many different answers and a wide variety of responses to this very same question.

The problem of defining what is really being quit can even pose problems to people who are not using any form of NRT or had any "slips" (relapses), for by reading the comments of other people who are "off smoking" for days, weeks, months or years and who are still complaining of this symptom and that craving can set up the expectation that quitting is really a long drawn out battle. This sets the stage for either a self-fulfilling prophecy situation or for easily blaming everything that goes wrong in an ex-smoker's life on the fact that he or she had quit smoking.

If you are you feeling stressed on a particular day weeks into your quit or having a specific physical symptom-it must be because you quit smoking. After all, look at those other people who are feeling stressed or having the same physical symptom the same day who have been off for just as long. We on the other hand try to insure that our readers recognize that if they are feeling stress or are having a physical symptom it is probably because they are just facing one or more stressful situations or are having symptoms to a problem that they had better find the real underlying reason for the cause. The string Life goes on without smoking explores this issue.

Other sites often lack a very thorough educational component helping people to understand important concepts inspiring people to quit or reinforcing their resolve to stay off. We have four major components built into the sites of www.whyquit.com and Freedom. We try to give our readers the understanding of why they smoke, why they should stop, how to stop, and most importantly, how to stay free from not only smoking but from the control of nicotine. The combination of having all of this information and being truly nicotine free gives our readers a real edge in sustaining their quits and of helping them to have a healthier and happier outlook on their life as a non-smoker. We help them to develop a more positive attitude and this will often minimize the emotional adjustment period people can experience when quitting. We also help them to see early on that they are not depriving themselves of a cigarette as opposed to ridding themselves of smoking. We in essence help to speed up the emotional recovery process for many of our readers.

I sometimes worry about our members participating at other sites for the conventional wisdom advice and different philosophies taught can sometimes sidetrack them in their progress. In a way though I think it can also be helpful for some to read at other sites too as long as they read at these sites with an educated and critical eye. Our members will often see people having an extended hard time and may very well be able to recognize just why these other people are in a perpetual emotional or physical withdrawal state and end up feeling more grateful and protective of their own quits. Our members will also see relapses on a regular basis and realize just how important it is to do everything in their power to make this quit stick.

By the way, we have guidelines as to how to behave as a Freedom member when at other sites. I am going to copy comments we have in Our Mission Statement string that talks about how we don't want our members stirring up debates at other sites with our materials and philosophies. What we are doing here at Freedom is controversial and we do not believe in stirring up controversies at other sites.

Also I am going to attach a few other links here that I think would be good for people who participate at other sites to read. Again, if you do read at other sites work at developing a critical eye and recognize what you are reading may not be what the person is writing. You may be reading "nicotine free," when the writer was saying "smoke free" or even "smoke free except for that one puff here and there that didn't really count."

Again, read these additional links below, They will help to prepare you to read anywhere and to recognize the real advantage you have in understanding just why you quit and why you are still totally convinced that you want to stick to your personal commitment to never take another puff.

Joel

Threads that shows how we are different than other sites:

I Liked My Other Support Group More


The Teaching of Conventional Wisdom at Freedom

Good news, our members don't relapse anymore...

Do members of our board seem to be too happy?

Misery Love Company

Quitting can be a very lonely experience

NRT and Quit Meters

Limitations with the use of NRT products

Our comments of how to participate at other sites regarding Freedom materials (From Our Mission Statement thread:



 
From: Joel Sent: 11/12/2004 7:08 AM

We are not the only Internet site on smoking cessation. There are plenty of others. We know that some of our members belong to other sites. We do try to make it clear that we want people who belong to more than one site to be careful how they share materials and information between sites.




We have a strictly enforced policy about posting links to other sites at Freedom. We won't let people do it. We also say that any materials that a person may pick up at other sites or in the media or even in professional journals need to be cleared through our management before being allowed on the board (see http://ffn.yuku.com/topic/12796)�.� We always want to be careful about giving advice that is considered conventional wisdom, sounds great on paper, and is basically wrong for most people trying to quit smoking.� Things like the idea of...���� The Teaching of Conventional Wisdom at Freedom discusses why we have these controls in place.



Other sites do not necessarily have these controls. Our feelings though are that even though the site may not have strict guidelines in place on posting materials from our site, we want our members to be cautious how they use our materials elsewhere.




Much of what we use here and at www.whyquit.com can have a great value being used elsewhere. Our why to quit materials and most of our relapse prevention materials can be of great value. But our how to quit materials can often cause great debate and controversy at others sites that advocate multiple methods of smoking cessation. I am attaching a rather lenghty discussion below that we have used numerous times in this string addressing the use of our materials at other sites.


We have a long standing policy on requesting that our members do not do anything to disrupt the operation of other boards. I hope all of our members and even just people who read here honor that request.



Be very cautious on using our cold turkey materials elsewhere. Also, as I said above most of our relapse prevention materials can be beneficial to other sites but there are some that will be problematic. The ones that are not appropriate to post elsewhere are the ones that make the clear distinction that there is absolutely no difference between slips and relapses. That is not a view shared by most other sites and it is clearly not our mission nor our intent to thrust our views on any other site.

Our Mission is to help people who find their way to our site to understand that to quit smoking and to stay permanently free is as simple as just knowing to never take another puff!

Joel

 



   
From: Joel. Sent: 11/2/2002 5:58 AM
I saw in a discussion that was going last night�that some people have come in here after having participated at other sites. I suspect that this is pretty common now a days. We get a little nervous when people come in from other sites, because they often have preconceived notions of how boards should be run and come in ready to share all of the conventional wisdoms they have picked up elsewhere. The string�The Teaching of Conventional Wisdom at Freedom really tries to address these issues head on.



What we do here is quite unconventional. We treat cigarette smoking as an actual drug addiction. Imagine that. Most other sites and most other programs call nicotine an addiction but somehow treat it different than other addictions. What other addiction is treated by administering the exact same drug just via a different route? What other program such as AA, or nicotine anonymous or cocain anonymous delivers the message at every meeting of don't let a little slip discourage you--it is not like you are drinking or using again?




At the same time though, we don't want people who have come from other sites to feel that we don't want them here now. We do want them because we suspect that they are here now because they realized the limitations of the other site at helping them sustain their quits. They often have a deeper appreciation of what we are really doing here.

But again, we are not the site for everyone. The other sites serve as resources for people who don't want to accept the things that are members do accept. The fact is there are more of those people than there are of people who believe what our members believe. But our mission is to help that minority, the people who want our help. Our mission is not to make other groups adopt our beliefs.



Here is a post addressing this very issue from late last year. The message is as important today as it was back then.




   
From: Joel. Sent: 12/30/2001 3:38 PM

Today we were notified that a member of our site, who is also a member at another site, put up a direct link at the other site directly to the Freedom board. While we understand the good intentions of the person who did it, we feel that we must point out that such actions can cause problems. One other time I put up a post addressing this issue, but from the opposite side, where one of our members put up a post on our board about another site. I am going to attach that post below. This statement along with our mission statement really explains the potential problems of such practices and why we try not to divert the focus of other sites at the same time as protecting our focus here at Freedom.




 

The letter from the past:



A new member put up a link to another board, one that has been around for a long time, one that in fact our two founders originally came from. While there was nothing inherently wrong with the exact post that it led to, it did divert people to a site that has many different views, most notably on NRT issues. Since we basically have always had policies in place asking people not to do this, I removed the post and emailed the person letting him know that we don't put links up here. As a side note I also mentioned it was a pretty good idea not to put our link up at other sites too, for they also have different points of view and are often not thrilled seeing our agenda.
Well I didn't know at the time I sent that email that letters from my libraries were already posted by this person at a totally different site. And not just any letters, the NRT letters. Talk about making a lot of enemies real fast. There were 10 replies and none of them favorable. Luckily my name wasn't attached, but I think many knew who I was.

Before I came to Freedom, I was posting at other sites. I was very cautious about not letting my NRT views known, I knew they were not going to believed or appreciated. I always focused on the relapse prevention articles which I felt applied to anyone, no matter how they quit. Even these letters stirred controversy and I ended up leaving these other areas, usually by mutual agreement.

Even when I came to Freedom, I was here almost 5 months before I made my opinions on the matter known, and that was only because I was asked point blank and had no recourse but to answer. I had informed the management prior to this of my view but knew it was not shared and always felt that it was not my place to alter the site.

Anyway, what happened here is history now and our site did become transformed over time. But we must all recognize that the rest of the online world is in a different frame of mind and it is not our right to go change their opinions any more than it is their right to change ours. So please, if you are at other sites stay low key about our views here. You will likely stir up debate that will not convert anyone and just get yourself kicked out.

Convincing the rest of the world is beyond our means. What is important that every one here convinces him or herself. The only thing you have to convince yourself of is that you want to stay smoke free and the way to accomplish this goal is to never take another puff!

Joel

:
Last edited by Joel on 14 Sep 2012, 19:11, edited 8 times in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

14 Jan 2006, 04:13 #2


We ask that all members visiting other sites fully adhere to the other forum's rules and courtesies. Please be mindful that in mixed sites NRT quitters stand beside cold turkey quitters. Members in such support forums need to be supportive of the efforts of the entire group. We learned in 1999 and 2000 that debate about quitting methods can divide and weaken the group.

That being said, this is an abrupt nicotine cessation forum, it's what we do and it's the method that in 2006 will produce almost all successful long-term quitters. In the end every successful quitter is equal in one important regard, they each gave up their chemical. It is then that a single guiding principle works for all ... no nicotine today, Never Take Another Puff!

John (Gold x6)
Last edited by John (Gold) on 06 Jan 2011, 04:15, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 19:19

27 Apr 2006, 23:00 #3

Thanks, Joel
Yep-hit it right on the nose!
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

09 Sep 2006, 02:11 #4

I saw where a member was a tad discouraged because she was facing resistance from her boyfriend about joining up at our site. The reason given by the boyfriend was that he had issues with the kind of behaviors that often occur on internet bulletin boards. We have really taken steps to keep down the kind of outbreaks that happen at most Internet sites.

There are some people who do not feel comfortable joining any site like ours. No one should feel though that these people need to join our site in order to be successful. We really have tried to supply all of the materials that any person needs to quit through the site and through www.whyquit.com, even if a person never joins up. I am going to attach a commentary below that was originally in a string "A message to our lurkers."

From the string, "A Message to our Lurkers"

Last week I got an email from a person who had successfully quit smoking on New Years day of this year and has been visiting and reading at WhyQuit.com and Freedom. Generally the letter was thanking me for having the information available on the Internet, and it was a very positive letter. Her P.S. remark was a little sad though. It was:

"PS - the occasional snide comments from some of the fraternity/sorority about "lurkers" (for me, a new expression, since I just got my home computer in December) can be very painful to read. Also, often unjustified. And perhaps counter-productive, too"

I wrote her back the following comment:

Please don't be discouraged by the term lurker. I am sure we have a whole lot more lurkers at Freedom than we do active members. If a person spends time at Freedom and stays smoke free then he or she is doing great, whether he or she is a member or not. I do have frequent email correspondence from people who for one reason or another never joined Freedom and even from those who used to be members and left. I try to give these people as much priority as I do people who have joined up. If there is ever anything I can do to help, please don't hesitate to get in touch.

Remember, the only way to stay smoke free for a member, a lurker, or even a person who has never even heard of Freedom, a group that makes up the vast majority of the world population of ex-smokers, is simply understanding that to never get caught in the vice like grip of nicotine addiction again is contingent on the person knowing to never take another puff!

There is one other reason that I have heard that some people have shown a certain reluctance about joining the site. Because of the level of controls we exert at the site we are sometimes referred to as being cultish in our tactics. Here is a commentary I wrote on this topic a few years back:

Back in July of 2003 a member wrote to us that her husband said we sounded like a cult. I wrote the following post in response. I thought the comments help in a little way to capture how we really try to operate at Freedom.

Actually, I haven't had my work compared to a cult in my actual live clinic experience, although I have seen the accusation made from my Internet presence. Even though I was never accused of it in my live work, to some degree I was always cognizant of the fact that people could view what I was doing as seeming cult like. Much of how I operate is based on the assumption that if I were not careful I could easily be accused of trying to manipulate people I have helped in order to attain some personal gain.

A number of members over time have suggested that we work out some way to charge for participation in our group, or sell our material or encourage donations from our members to our group. It would be easy to do any of these things, but it would easily lead to the appearance that we are pushing our agenda for some sort of personal gain. Our style of operation makes these kind of accusations totally irrelevant.

As far as how to answer your husband's accusation of our cult like status, I went out on the Internet and found a few sites that listed characteristics of a cult. Here is one of the checklists provided by one site, with my explanation as to where Freedom fits in with each critera. There where others that went into a little more religious aspects, but basically, we don't touch issues of religion, politics, and most other lifestyle choices, so these criteria really don't apply to us either.

Joel

Characteristics of a Cult

The group is focused on a living leader to whom members seem to display excessively zealous, unquestioning commitment.

I actually hope not everyone is focused on the leaders of our group, although as far at to each member having an overzealous, unquestionable commitment of the goals of our group, I hope that are members are guilty of this--considering the goal is for each individual member to save his or her own health and life by staying committed to never take another puff!


The group is preoccupied with bringing in new members.

Actually, we want each and every member of our group to focus on his or her own quit. Hopefully others around you may eventually take your lead and quit smoking, but there is little we do to influence our members to pull in other people. We basically ask our members to simply set an example that it is possible to live smoke free--not by being members of our group but simply by staying committed to never take another puff!

The group is preoccupied with making money.

Some of these criteria may need a technical explanation of how we are different than a cult, but not this one. We have never made a penny from any of our members and have no future intentions of doing so either. Everything we have is given to our members and our lurkers free of charge, and we do not take donations.

Questioning, doubt, and dissent are discouraged or even punished.

We are dealing with combating drug addiction. It is true that we do not want our members questioning or doubting this fact. We could have a hard time defending against this one.

Mind-numbing techniques (such as meditation, chanting, speaking in tongues, denunciation sessions, debilitating work routines) are used to suppress doubts about the group and its leader(s).

Outside of mentioning deep breathing, I don 't think any of these factors fit our group.

The leadership dictates sometimes in great detail how members should think, act, and feel (for example: members must get permission from leaders to date, change jobs, get married; leaders may prescribe what types of clothes to wear, where to live, how to discipline children, and so forth).

As opposed to us telling people how they should live any other aspect of their life, we make it clear that we don't even want to discuss about other aspects of their lives. Our premise is everything you did as a smoker, you can still do as an ex-smoker.

The group is elitist, claiming a special, exalted status for itself, its leader(s), and members (for example: the leader is considered the Messiah or an avatar; the group and/or the leader has a special mission to save humanity).

If we could save humanity from smoking we would try--but we can't. As far as having any Messianic beliefs in my work, following my suggestions may keep you out of whatever you consider heaven longer, but only because following our suggestion you are likely to be here on earth longer--considering our only real suggestion is to never take another puff!

The group has a polarized us- versus-them mentality, which causes conflict with the wider society.

We avoid conflict at all costs. Even our Our Mission Statement spells out we don't want to take on institutes like tobacco companies or other industries who have interests in people continuing to smoke or use nicotine products. We want any person to be able to use our site for help, even if those people work for industries promoting smoking or nicotine.

The group's leader is not accountable to any authorities (as are, for example, military commanders and ministers, priests, monks, and rabbis of mainstream denominations).

Here is one that we can't actually defend against.

The group teaches or implies that its supposedly exalted ends justify means that members would have considered unethical before joining the group (for example: collecting money for bogus charities).

All we ask of our members is that they do not take a puff. We also explain that they should not take up other negative behaviors in order not to take a puff. (see "Do whatever it takes to quit smoking")

The leadership induces guilt feelings in members in order to control them.

Yes we have been known to induce guilt. See I Liked My Other Support Group More

Members' subservience to the group causes them to cut ties with family and friends, and to give up personal goals and activities that were of interest before joining the group.

If a member's personal goal was to prematurely cripple himself or herself, or to die prematurely, then we are guilty of trying to alter those personal goals. As far as cutting ties with family and friends, we in fact do the opposite. We don't want members spending an inordinate amount of time here at Freedom at the cost of time with their families.

Members are expected to devote inordinate amounts of time to the group.

Same answer as above. In addition, our hope is that by sticking to the commitment to quit smoking, you are buying yourself a whole lot of extra time to spend with family and friends. Living extra years and decades afford people who quit smoking more time and better quality time.

Members are encouraged or required to live and/or socialize only with other group members

We don't want our members over socializing with each other or with management. We are an educational site first, a support site second, and as far as a social site, we try to keep general socialization down to a minimum. We want our members to use the time they spend with us in order to secure their ability to be better able to socialize in their real world with their commitment intact to never take another puff.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

27 Nov 2006, 21:59 #5

I saw the term "smober" used here a few minutes ago. A couple of weeks ago I think another member posted a question on what the term means. Smober is a combination of the word smoke free and sober that is used at some quit smoking sites. It is a term that you are not going to hear much in the real world though for it is not an actual word.

Whenever I see a member use a word like "smober" it is a strong indication that they do spend time reading and learning at other quit sites. This always makes us a little nervous for people who pick up hints and tips at other sites are possibly going to pick up more than euphimastic terms but possibly also conventional wisdom quitting tips and concepts.

I think that this is an important string for readers of other sites to see and be aware of, so that such conventional wisdom's don't find their way over to Freedom.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

06 Dec 2006, 21:44 #6

We have a thread called "Tell a newbie how many seconds a day you still want a cigarette

This thread gives a little perspective on that string. People who have been elsewhere may very well think that the responses in this string don't seem normal, that there must be something unique about our quitters. The only thing unique by our design is the only people who can respond to this question are people actually totally off of nicotine--most for some pretty significant time periods. As it says above...

We have a string at Freedom titled Tell a newbie how many seconds a day you still want a cigarette. This is an extremely important string. If you go back and read through the hundreds of responses from people who are off for weeks, months, or even years and you will get a real appreciation of just how infrequent smoking thoughts really are for people who totally break free from nicotine. If you were to pose the exact same question at other sites that have the limitations of variable interpretations of what it means to be truly quit you would likely see many different answers and a wide variety of responses to this very same question.

The problem of defining what is really being quit can even pose problems to people who are not using any form of NRT or had any "slips" (relapses), for by reading the comments of other people who are "off smoking" for days, weeks, months or years and who are still complaining of this symptom and that craving can set up the expectation that quitting is really a long drawn out battle. This sets the stage for either a self-fulfilling prophecy situation or for easily blaming everything that goes wrong in an ex-smoker's life on the fact that he or she had quit smoking.

If you are you feeling stressed on a particular day weeks into your quit or having a specific physical symptom-it must be because you quit smoking. After all, look at those other people who are feeling stressed or having the same physical symptom the same day who have been off for just as long. We on the other hand try to insure that our readers recognize that if they are feeling stress or are having a physical symptom it is probably because they are just facing one or more stressful situations or are having symptoms to a problem that they had better find the real underlying reason for the cause. The string Life goes on without smoking explores this issue.

Other sites often lack a very thorough educational component helping people to understand important concepts inspiring people to quit or reinforcing their resolve to stay off. We have four major components built into the sites of www.whyquit.com and Freedom. We try to give our readers the understanding of why they smoke, why they should stop, how to stop, and most importantly, how to stay free from not only smoking but from the control of nicotine. The combination of having all of this information and being truly nicotine free gives our readers a real edge in sustaining their quits and of helping them to have a healthier and happier outlook on their life as a non-smoker. We help them to develop a more positive attitude and this will often minimize the emotional adjustment period people can experience when quitting. We also help them to see early on that they are not depriving themselves of a cigarette as opposed to ridding themselves of smoking. We in essence help to speed up the emotional recovery process for many of our readers.

I sometimes worry about our members participating at other sites for the conventional wisdom advice and different philosophies taught can sometimes sidetrack them in their progress. In a way though I think it can also be helpful for some to read at other sites too as long as they read at these sites with an educated and critical eye. Our members will often see people having an extended hard time and may very well be able to recognize just why these other people are in a perpetual emotional or physical withdrawal state and end up feeling more grateful and protective of their own quits. Our members will also see relapses on a regular basis and realize just how important it is to do everything in their power to make this quit stick.

By the way, we have guidelines as to how to behave as a Freedom member when at other sites. I am going to copy comments we have in Our Mission Statement string that talks about how we don't want our members stirring up debates at other sites with our materials and philosophies. What we are doing here at Freedom is controversial and we do not believe in stirring up controversies at other sites.

Also I am going to attach a few other links here that I think would be good for people who participate at other sites to read. Again, if you do read at other sites work at developing a critical eye and recognize what you are reading may not be what the person is writing. You may be reading "nicotine free," when the writer was saying "smoke free" or even "smoke free except for that one puff here and there that didn't really count."

Again, read these additional links below, They will help to prepare you to read anywhere and to recognize the real advantage you have in understanding just why you quit and why you are still totally convinced that you want to stick to your personal commitment to never take another puff.

Joel
Last edited by Joel on 27 May 2010, 10:55, edited 1 time in total.
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15 Dec 2006, 04:26 #7

100% correct - as I see it from being a serial quitter.

I never was - I was still dependant on nicotine - not from the stick but from gum - same difference.

I now know - being more than a week in, that any form of nicotine ,will continue to beg the brain to ask for more. If only I had known many year ago.
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18 Mar 2007, 20:44 #8

I saw a post from a new member who is now working on her first computer. I kicked up the string My Computer Saved My Life in which Linda discusses how her first computer helped her to quit and literally saved her life.

It illustrates how the Internet can can provide a great wealth of information and support for people dealing with many issues. The problem is, while the Internet can be a great resource for quality information, it can also be a source of lousy information too. It is crucial for people to know the importance of using a critical eye when reading materials from any online resources.



This is a good thread to read to see what the differences are between the kind of information that can be found at various sites regarding smoking cessation. I think it is an important thread for new members to read.


From above:

We have a thread called "Tell a newbie how many seconds a day you still want a cigarette

This thread gives a little perspective on that string. People who have been elsewhere may very well think that the responses in this string don't seem normal, that there must be something unique about our quitters. The only thing unique by our design is the only people who can respond to this question are people actually totally off of nicotine--most for some pretty significant time periods. As it says above...

We have a string at Freedom titled Tell a newbie how many seconds a day you still want a cigarette. This is an extremely important string. If you go back and read through the hundreds of responses from people who are off for weeks, months, or even years and you will get a real appreciation of just how infrequent smoking thoughts really are for people who totally break free from nicotine. If you were to pose the exact same question at other sites that have the limitations of variable interpretations of what it means to be truly quit you would likely see many different answers and a wide variety of responses to this very same question.

The problem of defining what is really being quit can even pose problems to people who are not using any form of NRT or had any "slips" (relapses), for by reading the comments of other people who are "off smoking" for days, weeks, months or years and who are still complaining of this symptom and that craving can set up the expectation that quitting is really a long drawn out battle. This sets the stage for either a self-fulfilling prophecy situation or for easily blaming everything that goes wrong in an ex-smoker's life on the fact that he or she had quit smoking.

If you are you feeling stressed on a particular day weeks into your quit or having a specific physical symptom-it must be because you quit smoking. After all, look at those other people who are feeling stressed or having the same physical symptom the same day who have been off for just as long. We on the other hand try to insure that our readers recognize that if they are feeling stress or are having a physical symptom it is probably because they are just facing one or more stressful situations or are having symptoms to a problem that they had better find the real underlying reason for the cause. The string Life goes on without smoking explores this issue.

Other sites often lack a very thorough educational component helping people to understand important concepts inspiring people to quit or reinforcing their resolve to stay off. We have four major components built into the sites of www.whyquit.com and Freedom. We try to give our readers the understanding of why they smoke, why they should stop, how to stop, and most importantly, how to stay free from not only smoking but from the control of nicotine. The combination of having all of this information and being truly nicotine free gives our readers a real edge in sustaining their quits and of helping them to have a healthier and happier outlook on their life as a non-smoker. We help them to develop a more positive attitude and this will often minimize the emotional adjustment period people can experience when quitting. We also help them to see early on that they are not depriving themselves of a cigarette as opposed to ridding themselves of smoking. We in essence help to speed up the emotional recovery process for many of our readers.

I sometimes worry about our members participating at other sites for the conventional wisdom advice and different philosophies taught can sometimes sidetrack them in their progress. In a way though I think it can also be helpful for some to read at other sites too as long as they read at these sites with an educated and critical eye. Our members will often see people having an extended hard time and may very well be able to recognize just why these other people are in a perpetual emotional or physical withdrawal state and end up feeling more grateful and protective of their own quits. Our members will also see relapses on a regular basis and realize just how important it is to do everything in their power to make this quit stick.

By the way, we have guidelines as to how to behave as a Freedom member when at other sites. I am going to copy comments we have in Our Mission Statement string that talks about how we don't want our members stirring up debates at other sites with our materials and philosophies. What we are doing here at Freedom is controversial and we do not believe in stirring up controversies at other sites.

Also I am going to attach a few other links here that I think would be good for people who participate at other sites to read. Again, if you do read at other sites work at developing a critical eye and recognize what you are reading may not be what the person is writing. You may be reading "nicotine free," when the writer was saying "smoke free" or even "smoke free except for that one puff here and there that didn't really count."

Again, read these additional links below, They will help to prepare you to read anywhere and to recognize the real advantage you have in understanding just why you quit and why you are still totally convinced that you want to stick to your personal commitment to never take another puff.

Joel





Last edited by Joel on 29 May 2012, 15:09, edited 2 times in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

24 Mar 2007, 21:10 #9

I saw the term used by a member of resetting a quit meter. It made me think of the comment below used in another string about quit meters, but also ties into this string well:

A few years back I wrote the following comment in another string we have at Freedom about Quitmeters. I thought it would be appropriate to attach it to this string too:

------------------------------------------------------------------------

I pulled a string earlier from a person who wrote her first post at Freedom saying she had recently relapsed and now asking if she should reset her quit meter. Boy did she pick the wrong group of quitters to ask that question. I thought I better bring this one up in case anyone else ever faces a similar dilemma.

For the record, it is said often at most sites that whether or not you reset your quitmeter is up to you. We agree--if you relapse it is up to you whether or not you reset your quit meter. If you want to fool yourself and try to fool the rest of the world that you are successfully smoke free go right on ahead. But don't waste Freedom's time with such foolishness. Post your relapse and your message will be gone in a flash along with your membership.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

20 Jun 2007, 18:58 #10

I saw a post from a new member who when he was young sat in on a number of Quit Smoking Clinics conducted by a large national voluntary health agency. I used to work for that agency and know quite well what their programs were like. I suspect that this member has a pretty dismal view of what the quitting experience is like and worst yet, what the odds of quitting may be like from this early exposure. The comments below address this issue.

Also, before I put up these comments, I want to note that these links referred to in the original post here would be good for people to read who have had exposure with other online groups or professional quitting programs.
Threads that shows how we are different than other sites and other professional programs:

I Liked My Other Support Group More

The Teaching of Conventional Wisdom at Freedom

Good news, our members don't relapse anymore...

Do members of our board seem to be too happy?

Misery Love Company

Quitting can be a very lonely experience

NRT and Quit Meters

Problems and limitations with the use of NRT's



Comments referred to above:
We have a thread called "Tell a newbie how many seconds a day you still want a cigarette

This thread gives a little perspective on that string. People who have been elsewhere may very well think that the responses in this string don't seem normal, that there must be something unique about our quitters. The only thing unique by our design is the only people who can respond to this question are people actually totally off of nicotine--most for some pretty significant time periods. As it says above...

This is an extremely important string. If you go back and read through the hundreds of responses from people who are off for weeks, months, or even years and you will get a real appreciation of just how infrequent smoking thoughts really are for people who totally break free from nicotine. If you were to pose the exact same question at other sites that have the limitations of variable interpretations of what it means to be truly quit you would likely see many different answers and a wide variety of responses to this very same question.

The problem of defining what is really being quit can even pose problems to people who are not using any form of NRT or had any "slips" (relapses), for by reading the comments of other people who are "off smoking" for days, weeks, months or years and who are still complaining of this symptom and that craving can set up the expectation that quitting is really a long drawn out battle. This sets the stage for either a self-fulfilling prophecy situation or for easily blaming everything that goes wrong in an ex-smoker's life on the fact that he or she had quit smoking.

If you are you feeling stressed on a particular day weeks into your quit or having a specific physical symptom-it must be because you quit smoking. After all, look at those other people who are feeling stressed or having the same physical symptom the same day who have been off for just as long. We on the other hand try to insure that our readers recognize that if they are feeling stress or are having a physical symptom it is probably because they are just facing one or more stressful situations or are having symptoms to a problem that they had better find the real underlying reason for the cause. The string Life goes on without smoking explores this issue.

Other sites often lack a very thorough educational component helping people to understand important concepts inspiring people to quit or reinforcing their resolve to stay off. We have four major components built into the sites of www.whyquit.com and Freedom. We try to give our readers the understanding of why they smoke, why they should stop, how to stop, and most importantly, how to stay free from not only smoking but from the control of nicotine. The combination of having all of this information and being truly nicotine free gives our readers a real edge in sustaining their quits and of helping them to have a healthier and happier outlook on their life as a non-smoker. We help them to develop a more positive attitude and this will often minimize the emotional adjustment period people can experience when quitting. We also help them to see early on that they are not depriving themselves of a cigarette as opposed to ridding themselves of smoking. We in essence help to speed up the emotional recovery process for many of our readers.

I sometimes worry about our members participating at other sites for the conventional wisdom advice and different philosophies taught can sometimes sidetrack them in their progress. In a way though I think it can also be helpful for some to read at other sites too as long as they read at these sites with an educated and critical eye. Our members will often see people having an extended hard time and may very well be able to recognize just why these other people are in a perpetual emotional or physical withdrawal state and end up feeling more grateful and protective of their own quits. Our members will also see relapses on a regular basis and realize just how important it is to do everything in their power to make this quit stick.

By the way, we have guidelines as to how to behave as a Freedom member when at other sites. I am going to copy comments we have in Our Mission Statement string that talks about how we don't want our members stirring up debates at other sites with our materials and philosophies. What we are doing here at Freedom is controversial and we do not believe in stirring up controversies at other sites.

Also I am going to attach a few other links here that I think would be good for people who participate at other sites to read. Again, if you do read at other sites work at developing a critical eye and recognize what you are reading may not be what the person is writing. You may be reading "nicotine free," when the writer was saying "smoke free" or even "smoke free except for that one puff here and there that didn't really count."

Again, read these additional links below, They will help to prepare you to read anywhere and to recognize the real advantage you have in understanding just why you quit and why you are still totally convinced that you want to stick to your personal commitment to never take another puff.

Joel
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Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:05

23 May 2008, 21:34 #11

I hope it is not innapropriate to point out (because I may be the poster who "uses" that term), that one of the quitmeters recommended at why quit uses "Smobriety" in the stats formula. Since I am on Mac, that is the only quitmeter available, apparently. So unless I write over it each time I use my stats, they wil always say "Smobriety comes to...". So, in a way, it does not necessarily have any relationship to looking at other stop smoking sites, but can come from using one of the ttols recommended here.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

23 May 2008, 21:55 #12

Actually, I never knew that about a quit meter. I see it makes sense though for when I do a word search of Freedom it shows that the term "smobriety" has been used at Freedom 248 times, so I suspect a lot of that is from that quit counter. When I do the same word search for "smober" it brings up 5 occurences of its use.
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Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:05

23 May 2008, 23:54 #13

And Joel, I forgot to say thank you. A huge, enormous, heart and lung felt thank you. What you have created here is tremendous.
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Joined: 09 Oct 2006, 07:00

24 May 2008, 06:07 #14

From: Lburgguy1 Sent: 5/24/2008 5:18 AM
I'm sorry but I fail to see the big deal about using the term "smober". I don't want to make a big deal about it but I will say this much: I think it is a logical extension of the words smoke and sober, and even though I have never used it it made sense to me when I saw it and I thought it was novel and cute. I think to infer that the person using it learned it elsewhere is premature.

Joel I love you and this site for literally saving my life. I just think that you risk offending the person who could very well have come up with the term independently and innocently. You risk making that person feel alienated here and vulnerable to a relapse. IMHO. I could be wrong by not seeing the bigger picture.

I think about smoking (or rather I think about smoking fondly) maybe a total of five minutes/day - tops.

John day 77
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24 May 2008, 06:42 #15

Lburgguy (John) wrote in a different string:
"I'm sorry but I fail to see the big deal about using the term "smober".

Hello John:

This string it what explains the history of the use of the term "smober." It is a term that is used a lot around the Internet by sites dealing with smoking, but not a term that is used much in real world settings. In fact, as a post from a couple of years ago illustrated this point when a new member wrote asking what the term actually meant.

I just looked it up in what I believe is the most common Internet dictionary/encyclopedia and got the following response:

Search results From xxxxx, the free encyclopedia No article title matches
There is no page titled "smober".




Being that it isn't used much in real world settings, and from the look of things not even in popular Internet dictionary/encyclopedias yet, when it is used by a member it probably is still a pretty good indicator that the member does read at other sites.



This in itself is not a problem--we suspect that many of our members participate at other sites and that is fine. We do however want members to know that they need to be careful as to what they bring here to Freedom from other sites, and, equally important, how they must be careful of what they share of information we use at Freedom for much of what we talk about here is not welcome by the management of most other sites.



Our views on pharmaceuticals are not shared by most other sites, and our views on relapse will also stir up debates at other sites. We appreciate the problems that stirring up debates can pose and we really do not want our members doing it with our materials.



So until we start seeing the term used in general media and real world encounters, it is still a pretty good bet that a member using it at our board is reading elsewhere and probably still a good idea to get them to see this thread and understand the implications of bringing materials onto the Freedom site from other locations. The other string that discusses this implication is The Teaching of Conventional Wisdom at Freedom. Here are comments from that thread that tie into this issue:

Conventional Wisdom and Quitting Smoking
We always want to be careful about giving advice that is considered conventional wisdom, sounds great on paper, and is basically wrong for most people trying to quit smoking.

Things like the idea of feeling you have to wait till a certain day of the week, or prepare for a certain time period gives many people the excuse to put off a quit that they may be ready to do at the point in time that they show up. Putting off a quit to the "right time" has caused many a smoker to put it off till death.

Some people advise people to sleep through the quitting process. Sleeping as much as you can teaches a smoker in the midst of a quit how to be a prisoner in bed as opposed to how to start to live life as soon as he or she can. Some people, if totally exhausted or sleepy from the withdrawals may need the sleep, but they are not the majority. If a person is tired and needs sleep, staying in bed is fine--but if they are doing it as an escape, they are slowing up their psychological adjustments more than helping them. There are plenty of other such tidbits of wisdom out there, such as carry cigarettes to show how strong you are or give up coffee or change all of your daily routines that have many advocates but is still not necessarily right for the majority of people.

We have a Quit Smoking Tip Sheet that gives a few tried and true techniques, not all inclusive by any means, but a starting point. Keep in mind, this list in controversial in most places, especially when considering the first line reads "Quit cold turkey. In the long run it's the easiest and most effective technique of smoking cessation." Controversial elsewhere or not, it is key to note that this concept and a few others are the reasons that our members joined up at Freedom and have stayed here.

Most people are here because they like the focus we put on our simplicity to quitting. I think many if not most have been to other sites and realized that idea of anything that works for you is fine just didn't seem to work for them. If you think other sites have an edge, go and read at them for a few days. Read carefully what is often going on. You will often see numerous relapses that are down played as not being big mistakes, and you will also likely see people who are complaining a lot more of physical and emotional problems much longer than the average participant here at Freedom. We are trying to help people get adjusted both mentally and physically the fastest they can to life as an ex-smoker.

We want to caution our newest members to read here and learn as much as you can and not to be so quick to throw in quitting advice that you have picked up elsewhere--either at other sites or in your real world encounters. We want people to come to Freedom to first learn how to quit before they shift their attentions on how to teach people to quit. Although in truth, the real reason people should be here should always be to enforce his or her own personal quit even more than influencing others--each and every members quit and life depends on this goal. Any advice that is telling people that they must somehow shift their way of life in order to start or sustain a quit may not be accurate for most people.

The bottom line of quitting is, the sooner people realize that everything they could do as a smoker they can now do as an ex-smoker--the sooner they realize that there is life without smoking. They will also find out there may be many things that they can now do better without smoking and that life is basically better on many fronts from them having quit smoking. The faster people get back to their life--the sooner they will break triggers and habits and the sooner they will realize that they can do anything as an ex-smoker as long as they always remember to never take another puff!

Joel

and

Every now and then I see a post that has the line line, "I've heard that...," or "I've seen somewhere...", or "I've read at another site...," or even "My doctor says...,"and then goes on to tell of some of conventional wisdom or folk tale for all to read and maybe get the impression that there is some validity to the specific quitting advice claim. This kind of post is likely standard fare at many other Internet Support Sites but we are not set up to be a standard Internet Support Site. We are set up to be an educational forum that also happens to offer support. We really make a concerted effort at Freedom to make sure that all of the concepts presented have some real value and validity.

It is one thing for a person to write that they have heard or read something and want to know if it is valid, but to just write out the comment as advice or as a fact because they have heard it that it must be true can pose a problem. This string talks about how important it is for people who post here to be cautious on what they pass out as advice that is picked up elsewhere.

I'm not saying that there isn't some good advice out there, but it is best to clear ideas though our managers first before putting it out as some sort of factual statement. At a minimum, if you heard something elsewhere that you may think is of value, post the idea as a question so as to make it clear that you are just trying to do some fact finding and not trying to give the impression that you are stating a known and valid fact that may impact people reading here at Freedom.





I hope this answers your concerns. If you have further concerns feel free to write me or to [url=mailto:managers@whyquit.com]managers@whyquit.com[/url].

Joel
Last edited by Joel on 27 May 2010, 11:06, edited 1 time in total.
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24 May 2008, 18:02 #16

As per reading on other sites... I admit, there have been a couple of times when I have strayed, just to see what else is out there - in particular to see what exists in the country where I live and in that language.

But I have found no other website devoted uniquely to cold-turkey quitting, where the focus is so purely kept. That is why I really respect the strongly enforced limits held up here. No chat, no diverging, no fluff, no squabbling, no "trolls", just 100% no nonsense get-over-the-nicotine and on with your life aid and education.

Every other site I have checked out (and I have spent very little time doing so and belong to no other such forum) has relapsers getting encouragement to "brush off your knees, re-patch, get back on the gum, it's not so bad, everybody slips now and again...", and then "What's better, this Chantix or another expensive big pharma drug? Patch, gum, lozenges?" Aaaargh!

There is precious, precious little education about nicotine addiction - and much less the Law of Addiction. WIthout that, in my humble opinion, it is useless to try quitting for the long term.

It makes me mad and frustrated to see how nicotine addiction is treated by and large, because I now know there is only one cure, and it is 100% free for the taking: NTAP.

So I cannot imagine any devotee of Why Quit finding anything other than frustration, nonsense and plain old bad advice anywhere else. Plus a lot of chit chat that has nothing to do with quitting smoking ("Whose going to win the world cup and who are you going to vote for and....").

We're all here for one purpose only - to understand and get over an addiction and get on with the rest of our lives!

NTAP!!!!

Smobriety comes to: 0Y 1M 2W 2D 19H 50Mns €-Saved to date: €260.19 - 962 chemical and nicotine laden smokes happily not consumed!!!!
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

24 May 2008, 22:25 #17

I came across whyquit.com from another forum after feeling that there has GOT to be something else out there where the people are more serious. I was searching for something more serious and I'm grateful I came across Freedom. I consider myself truly blessed to have come across whyquit.com, and after reading, reading, and more readin...along with the wonderful videos posted by Joel, and did I mention reading? It became crystal clear that I had arrived at the right place where people had the same mindset as myself. It was a HUGE relief reading Joel's material as it cleared the air once and for all, explained things very clearly and rationaly, and made it possible to move forward towards recovery...but with one VERY big difference...this time I was educated and I actually had some sort of idea of what was going on, what to expect, why to expect it ect. I check in on the other forum from time to time and I am amazed at some of the so called "advice" that people are giveing. I don't post directly in order not to start any problems, but I have sent a private message to a few people with a link to articles that I thought might help explain what they were going through and why. Of course the articles are from the wonderful library available here.

By the way, I'm new and this is my first post, but I just want to say that I am truly thankful to be part of such a special group. Thanks to Joel and everyone else responsible for this forum and this website. I feel that, for me anyway, it is the main ingedient that has been missing is previous attempts and that having it for this quit has and continues to make all the difference.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

24 May 2008, 22:52 #18

I guess I was blessed, or lucky, to have only found this site.

The tough-love and no nonsense approach is what is needed to quit this nasty addiction.

If this site had even hinted that there was any other solution other than NTAP, I would have tried that route.... and I would have failed at my quit.

Thanks to Joel and the many others behind the scenes keeping this site up.

John day 78
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

06 Oct 2008, 13:31 #19

My favorite comment at other sites is:

"Oh yeah, product XYZ is such a blessing. It really works. I couldn't have done it without product XYZ. It's helped me quit four times. "

So, silly me, I'm thinking...wait a minute if something really is that great at helping you quit, you should only need to do it once!

I guess I'm just too simple-minded to get it.
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Joined: 06 Dec 2008, 16:58

01 Jan 2010, 22:13 #20

Being that it is New Years there are likely a higher number of people considering quitting now and exploring sites around the Internet. This thread here clearly defines how we have different views and operate very differently from other sites out there, and explains why. There are people here who may very well be using other sites while being members here or just reading here, which is fine. This thread though helps these members and readers understand discrepencies that they may see in what people experience at other sites compared to the experiences that most of our posting members seem to describe:

We have a thread called "Tell a newbie how how many seconds a day you still want a cigarette"

This thread gives a little perspective on that string. People who have been elsewhere may very well think that the responses in this string don't seem normal, that there must be something unique about our quitters. The only thing unique by our design is the only people who can respond to this question are people actually totally off of nicotine--most for some pretty significant time periods. As it says above...

This is an extremely important string. If you go back and read through the hundreds of responses from people who are off for weeks, months, or even years and you will get a real appreciation of just how infrequent smoking thoughts really are for people who totally break free from nicotine. If you were to pose the exact same question at other sites that have the limitations of variable interpretations of what it means to be truly quit you would likely see many different answers and a wide variety of responses to this very same question.

The problem of defining what is really being quit can even pose problems to people who are not using any form of NRT or had any "slips" (relapses), for by reading the comments of other people who are "off smoking" for days, weeks, months or years and who are still complaining of this symptom and that craving can set up the expectation that quitting is really a long drawn out battle. This sets the stage for either a self-fulfilling prophecy situation or for easily blaming everything that goes wrong in an ex-smoker's life on the fact that he or she had quit smoking.

If you are you feeling stressed on a particular day weeks into your quit or having a specific physical symptom-it must be because you quit smoking. After all, look at those other people who are feeling stressed or having the same physical symptom the same day who have been off for just as long. We on the other hand try to insure that our readers recognize that if they are feeling stress or are having a physical symptom it is probably because they are just facing one or more stressful situations or are having symptoms to a problem that they had better find the real underlying reason for the cause. The string Life goes on without smoking explores this issue.

Other sites often lack a very thorough educational component helping people to understand important concepts inspiring people to quit or reinforcing their resolve to stay off. We have four major components built into the sites of www.whyquit.com and Freedom. We try to give our readers the understanding of why they smoke, why they should stop, how to stop, and most importantly, how to stay free from not only smoking but from the control of nicotine. The combination of having all of this information and being truly nicotine free gives our readers a real edge in sustaining their quits and of helping them to have a healthier and happier outlook on their life as a non-smoker. We help them to develop a more positive attitude and this will often minimize the emotional adjustment period people can experience when quitting. We also help them to see early on that they are not depriving themselves of a cigarette as opposed to ridding themselves of smoking. We in essence help to speed up the emotional recovery process for many of our readers.

I sometimes worry about our members participating at other sites for the conventional wisdom advice and different philosophies taught can sometimes sidetrack them in their progress. In a way though I think it can also be helpful for some to read at other sites too as long as they read at these sites with an educated and critical eye. Our members will often see people having an extended hard time and may very well be able to recognize just why these other people are in a perpetual emotional or physical withdrawal state and end up feeling more grateful and protective of their own quits. Our members will also see relapses on a regular basis and realize just how important it is to do everything in their power to make this quit stick.

By the way, we have guidelines as to how to behave as a Freedom member when at other sites. I am going to copy comments we have in Our Mission Statement string that talks about how we don't want our members stirring up debates at other sites with our materials and philosophies. What we are doing here at Freedom is controversial and we do not believe in stirring up controversies at other sites.

Also I am going to attach a few other links here that I think would be good for people who participate at other sites to read. Again, if you do read at other sites work at developing a critical eye and recognize what you are reading may not be what the person is writing. You may be reading "nicotine free," when the writer was saying "smoke free" or even "smoke free except for that one puff here and there that didn't really count."

Again, read these additional links below, They will help to prepare you to read anywhere and to recognize the real advantage you have in understanding just why you quit and why you are still totally convinced that you want to stick to your personal commitment to never take another puff.

Joel

Forgot to attach these links earlier:
Threads that shows how we are different than other sites and other professional programs:

I Liked My Other Support Group More

The Teaching of Conventional Wisdom at Freedom

Good news, our members don't relapse anymore...

Do members of our board seem to be too happy? Misery Love Company

Quitting can be a very lonely experience

NRT and Quit Meters

Limitations with the use of NRT products
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29 May 2012, 15:03 #21

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Joined: 13 Nov 2008, 14:04

14 Sep 2012, 19:05 #22

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