Is Relapse a Natural Part of the Addiction Process?

Joel
Joel

March 12th, 2001, 8:15 pm #1

Most other boards, and in fact most professional programs and nicotine addiction experts see relapsing as a normal part of the addiction process. In a way we are out on a limb here at Freedom. We don't accept relapse as a normal process of addiction. We see a relapse as a natural process of not understanding and/or accepting ones own addiction. For if the true implication of a relapse is understood, any sane and recovering addict would choose not to relapse.

Every recovering nicotine addict here has the tools in place not to relapse, which is why he or she is a recovering addict now and not an active user. He or she understands full well, up to this point in time that he or she could not control quantity of cigarettes or duration of the relapse. If nicotine is readministered, the relapse will take on a life of its own, and has the full potential of taking your life in the process.

If you keep that understanding and keep in practice our one simple principle, a relapse is not going to be a natural occurrence and in fact, a relapse is going to be an impossibility. For as long as you follow one simple principal, you will never be able to go back to smoking. The principle, is just remembering if you want to keep control of your addiction never take another puff!
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Joel
Joel

March 12th, 2001, 8:22 pm #2

Don't ever get the impression that relapsing is a normal part of quitting. Relapsing is only normal for people who don't understand addiction or don't believe they themselves are addicts. But everyone who has spend a few minutes reading here at Freedom is a nicotine addict. If not, you would never have found us in the first place or you would have written us off as being off the wall when reading your first few post or our welcome pages.

Once you joined up you were making an acknowledgement of your state of being at that time, and addicted smoker. That state is never going to leave. Once an addict, you will always be an addict. But over time, it will become an asymptomatic addiction, hence, no visible signs, no real need. But your body is permanently altered and if you ever let your guard down for a second a relapse is going to be a reality. Nobody knows if they are going to have another quit in them. But as long as you follow one simple lesson here, you will never have to worry about another quit. That rule is to stay smoke free and reap the health and lifesaving benefits that go with being smoke free you must never take another puff!

Joel
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NYPam(GREEN)
NYPam(GREEN)

March 13th, 2001, 9:43 am #3



Joel, When I start thinking "junkie thoughts" I realize how close to the edge I am getting.... I look for a safety net... and I hear my mind scream...
Never take another Puff!!
It has worked for me so far!

pam
Two months, one week, three days, 13 hours, 28 minutes and 45 seconds. 1739 cigarettes not smoked, saving $395.63. Life saved: 6 days, 55 minutes.
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John (Gold)
John (Gold)

March 31st, 2001, 9:50 pm #4

Those selling nicotine need relapse in order to stay in the nicotine business.
I've given enough already! I refuse to give any more Knowing that the nicotine receptors in my mind have been permanently altered and that I'll always be just one puff away from returning to a heavy 3 pack a day smoker (or maybe more), doesn't make the complete comfort and total calmness that I've felt for the past 20 months any less comfortable or or any less calming. The truth doesn't hurt, it empowers.
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Joel
Joel

April 1st, 2001, 9:36 pm #5

I see Zep brought this up yesterday (thanks Zep) but I think it is an important one to bring up today. No one should ever see relapse as an inevitability. It is only going to happen to an individual who loses sight of the fact that they are nicotine addicts. They were the day they quit, they still are today, they will be nicotine addicts for the rest of their lives. The addiction will become asymptomatic, almost may seem like it is no longer there. But it is, and if ever given the opportunity it will take you down tobacco road again with all the horror and tragedies that go with being a smoker. To stay on the road to Freedom instead your must prevent relapse and the devastations that go with it. To do this you must always remember to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joel

April 25th, 2001, 8:30 am #6

For Feisty
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gonecold (Silver)
gonecold (Silver)

April 27th, 2001, 1:03 am #7

In my mind I still think I will relaspe. I am only 3 weeks into my quit.
I cannot afford to look down the road to next week , next month or next year.
I'm only looking at today, and trying to stay true to myself, to Never Take Another Puff.
One day at a time.
Hopefully with enough "one days, it will get easier.
I consider it a major victory when I have gone through the day without , caving in to the NicoDemon.

This site has been a great help, thanks to all who have shared their own experiences.


Jon
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GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)
GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)

April 27th, 2001, 1:25 am #8

Dear Jon,

If you tell yourself you will relapse....then you will! Please tell yourself that you WON'T relapse and you won't.

Keep reading and remember that attitude and determination play a huge role in a quit. Information about your addiction....and in fact learning that you are indeed an addict, should keep you from ever taking another puff and that one puff is the only difference between success and failure. It could also be the difference between life and death.

keep up the great job...and just take it one day at a time.

yqs,

Linda
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mals
mals

April 27th, 2001, 2:52 am #9

If I look back (it's only been three weeks since I quit)to my smoking days - they seem very far away. Sometimes it seems like quitting wasn't that hard at all. If I take another puff then I cld always quit again. Right??? WRONG!!! Those were terrible days. Writhing pain, nauseous mornings and horrible crying spells. I do not crave a cigarette at all - the only thing that remains is the illusion of fun. It is but an illusion. A mirage.

Can I really afford to fall prey to that again? Yes I can.

It feels good to keep moving on and adding the days since I quit. Like someone pointed out - it is a challenge - a challenge worth loving and living for. Feels great to have accomplished something great. A relapse wouldn't hurt anyone but ME.
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GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)
GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)

May 2nd, 2001, 6:08 pm #10

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S Sweet
S Sweet

May 12th, 2001, 12:59 am #11

for a friend that i know is reading
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Joel
Joel

May 25th, 2001, 6:58 pm #12

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SunshineRay
SunshineRay

May 25th, 2001, 9:07 pm #13

Thanks for bringing this thread back up to the forefront. Certainly needed to read all these postings, especially Joel's, Zep's and Linda's. When I relapsed I totally (conviently) forgot that I am a nicotine addict for now and for ever, but that doesn't mean I ever, ever have to take another puff. I can't stop crying this morning, I feel like such a total failure at everything ... and this Quit, so far, is so much worse than my other almost 4 weeks ago because of my mental disposition right now, and for some time more. Things used to be so easy ... everything seems so hard now. I remember quitting 20 years ago, and it was so easy ... I just made up my mind and did it. But the Nicodemon did get me back 8 months later, even then. Whew, my tears are stopping, I was weak in mind and spirit then, just as addicted then as I am now ... even now when ciggerettes make me so **** sick and so quickly ... the next morning I'm in actual tears and wired from the extra lack of oxegen in by body the ciggerettes have taken out, and that I'm environmentally sensitive now to just about everything, and ciggerettes have just about everything environmental not nice in them ... and my poor immune system just can't handle it, and I'm feeling sick the next day - like today. Once and addict, always an addicted. And Linda, all morning I've had this voice in my head say "you can't do this, you've come back to Freedom to soon", "so want another puff - just quit (Freedom) and come back later.... your not going to make it, you're going to relapse. Well, after reading these posts, and venting here, I'm telling that voice to take a hike, I AM IN CONTROL HERE, NOT THE **** NICTINE.
sunshine 18 hours, 7 minutes I have chosen not to smoke.
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GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)
GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)

May 29th, 2001, 11:47 pm #14

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Joel
Joel

June 20th, 2001, 7:12 pm #15

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Joel
Joel

June 27th, 2001, 10:52 pm #16

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Joel
Joel

July 3rd, 2001, 8:51 am #17

With many medical professionals scanning our site I thought this would be one of particular value to emphasize. Relapse is a state that should be avoided at all costs. Messages like "don't let a slip put you back to smoking" is all but assuring that recovering addicts are going to think that "slipping" is acceptable. A slip is a relapse and a relapse hold potentially deadly consequences. So don't give the message of not to let a slip put you back to smoking, rather deliver the message that to stay free from smoking, don't slip. In other words to stay free always remember to never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joel

July 18th, 2001, 6:51 pm #18

I am bringing this one up for the same reason stated in the above post in this string. With many people likely looking in for the first time, understanding that relapses are totally unnecessary is of paramount importance. Anyone can quit on his or her first attempt, or if you have had numerous previous attempts that failed it is because you didn't understand one simple premise-that you are a drug addict. Nicotine is the drug, and now if you treat nicotine for what it is--an addiction, you will be able to get control back of your life and be able to choose to keep that control as long as you always understand that to stay free you must never take another puff!

Joel
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Joel
Joel

July 30th, 2001, 7:50 pm #19

Another important post pointing out the importance understanding nicotine addiction. Also for the benefit or our newer members, make sure when strings like this come up with more than 15 replies, go back and read the first few (hitting the "first" link just under the last post) as well as the latter ones. There is often good information in the early posts too which may be missed. If a string is long there is a pretty good chance that it elicited some pretty good discussion and something in the early posts can sometimes really make a difference for you.
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GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)
GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)

August 3rd, 2001, 10:38 pm #20

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pammers
pammers

August 4th, 2001, 3:29 am #21

yup,that's why this is the site for serious quitters,you don't tell us it's ok to relapse and pat us on the back.This site is exactly what I needed.
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Joel
Joel

August 16th, 2001, 11:21 am #22

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Joel
Joel

August 30th, 2001, 10:16 pm #23

I have to say I am always nervous when I bring up posts after we find out that a person has relapsed so that the individual is not seeing these posts as a personal attack. I bring them up to teach the person as well as everyone else reading it that learning and understanding the messages are key to success, for all concerned. As you can tell from today's case, we have been having behind the scenes correspondance with the person involved and I know that she will understand the reasons for the flooding of the relapse prevention message.

We walk a tightrope here and how to best balance the needs of the individual as well as the needs of the whole community. It is not always easy. We want to support the individual without undermining the group as a whole.

A relapse is a horrible thing for a person to go through and will result in the person either having to quit again or smoking again till it cripples and kills then. Often it turns out to be a combination of both options: quitting--suffering; relapsing--suffering; quitting again--suffering; relapsing again--suffering; getting diagnosed with a disabling disease--suffering; quitting again--suffering and still having the disabling disease that still causes--suffering, eventually premature death--end of suffering.

There are two ways then to end the cycle of addiction above, dying or keeping in practice our one simple rule--if you want to stay smoke free never take another puff!

Joel
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GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)
GrumpyOMrsS (Gold)

September 10th, 2001, 4:59 am #24

for our newest members
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Joel
Joel

October 9th, 2001, 6:57 pm #25

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