AIBU .. Smoking & Children...

(93 Posts)
HungryHippo89 Wed 09-Jan-13 09:47:28

I smoke... I have a DSS (8) around for 2 days a week ... DSS Mother has asked me to no longer smoke infront of DSS because i'm glamourising smoking and it isn't good for his health ... I think she is over-reacting since i have been smoking infront of him for the last 4 years ...

I smoke around or less than 5 a day ...
I Don't smoke in the home - I go outside and shut the door
I Don't smoke in the car
I Don't smoke withing a few meters of him-
I have explained to him how harmful smoking can be and that i should really stop ...

AIBU to think she is over-reacting to cause a problem? And that it is an unreasonable request to ask me to stop smoking infront of him 100%? After all he can walk through the high street and see loads of people smoking? My OH won't give me any advice on the subject as he isn't amazingly bothered about him seeing me smoking just as long as it's not in a confined space and he isn't having to breath it in ...

AIBU to think she is over reacting?

RyleDup Wed 09-Jan-13 10:21:42

I smoke, but I go to great lengths to hide it from dc as I don't want them to think its a good thing to do because I do it. I brush my teeth and scrub my hands after as well. Can't see why you cant hide it if you only smoke 5 a day.

YouOldSlag Wed 09-Jan-13 10:25:56

Funnily enough, I was about to make a comparison with drinking.

I actually think the mother is a bit U. You can only partially control your child's environment, you can't micromanage it. You are smoking outside, you are only smoking 5 a day. It's not ideal, bit it's your habit and up to you (I smoke 5 a day too, so I'm not judging).

If she doesn't want you smoking at all when you have DSS, is she asking you to not smoke for a whole weekend? If so, she is being unreasonable.

Now if someone was looking after my child I wouldn't want them drunk, for example, but I wouldn't insist they didn't have a glass or two of wine. This kind of strikes me as the same thing.

People smoke, we all know it's horrible (including smokers), but we can't have total control over other people.

Fenton Wed 09-Jan-13 10:26:16

I don't think she's being at all unreasonable to ask this.

Just to take the Mother / Stepmother thing out of this for a moment, - my young children have older cousins who they visit regularly, - one is a smoker and never allows them to see her smoking. Of course they have seen people smoking but not their cousin who they love and look up to. - I think that's the thing here - you are an important adult in this child's life therefore should consider your part as a role model for him - his Mum has a point.

acceptableinthe80s Wed 09-Jan-13 10:27:11

My mum cares for ds when i'm working, she's a smoker but stopped smoking in the house when the grandchildren came along. She goes outside, wears a big 'smoking jacket' which lives in the garage, washes her hands and brushes her teeth afterwards. I am fine with this, smoke doesn't have to linger on you if you take these measures. Yes to some extent she will still be breathing out toxic fumes but really it's very minimal and probably no worse then the toxic fumes inhaled outside the school gates with hundreds of cars coming and going. YANBU, what you do in your own garden is your business.

TripleRock Wed 09-Jan-13 10:27:43

I agree with the DSS mum too.

Children whos parents smoke are much more likely to take it up themselves.

Also that whole do as I say not as I do thing surely doesnt work either.

We have relatives who smoke, they only do so outside and never when we're there. But it upsets me that DD clothes still reek of it when we come home and I worry about the harm caused. Its stange as I never notice it while we're there, only when we've come home.

everlong Wed 09-Jan-13 10:30:46

Maybe she's thinking at 8 he's coming to the impressionable age?

Porkster Wed 09-Jan-13 10:35:10

I agree with DSS mum too.

You don't smoke a huge amount, could you not do it when he's not around?

Fenton Wed 09-Jan-13 10:36:13

Another consideration should be that presumably she is a non-smoker in a non-smoking household and probably is super sensitive to any whiff of residual smoke on her child's clothes.

If my child came back to me with even a hint of cigarette smoke on him it would seriously piss me off.

But then I do have a very sensitive nose and can sniff out if DH has stopped for a sneaky BurgerKing even hours later grin

HungryHippo89 Wed 09-Jan-13 10:37:13

What about the impression of his Mum/Dad/Granny/Nanna/Grandad/Aunties/Uncles/Cousins not smoking? hmm

ifancyashandy Wed 09-Jan-13 10:39:46

NaturalBaby I totally understand you not wanting people to smoke around your children but how do you enforce it? Say, in a pub / restaurant garden? Or a friends barbecue? Would you ask a stranger to put their cigarette out? I get asking to now blow in your direction etc but to actually not smoke?

lannyshrops Wed 09-Jan-13 10:44:51

The latest research shows that the chemical residue left on clothing etc from smoking as at a harmful level for up to 30 minutes post cigarette.

Research also shows that children of smokers, or children who have stong role models in their life who smoke are more likely to smoke themselves.

I can see the mothers point as I really wouldn't want to subject my child to smoking if at all possible. I know that she will see people on the street but I believe that is entirely different to family or close friends being seen to do it.

I do think It sends out mixed signals to children. My aunt was ans still is. Smoker. As a child I looked up to her so much. When I was about 12 I found out that she smoked and I remember being quite upset about it and confused about how it was an ok thing for someone who my father has promoted as a positive role model to do.

By the way, I smoked from 15 to 30 for various reasons I believe, but I gave up six months before TTC. The last thing I want is my daughter to see her mummy doing something so detrimental to her healh.

Wallison Wed 09-Jan-13 10:47:37

^ The latest research shows that the chemical residue left on clothing etc from smoking as at a harmful level for up to 30 minutes post cigarette.

Really? I'm surprised we haven't all dropped down dead then because surely most of us have shared offices/buses/trains/lifts with people who have smoked 30 mins before coming near us.

Yakshemash Wed 09-Jan-13 10:49:47

You could always just....give up.

[dons hard hat]

LadyBeagleEyes Wed 09-Jan-13 10:54:22

She is BU.
She's no right to tell you what you can do in your own home, and you don't do it anywhere near him.

lannyshrops Wed 09-Jan-13 11:07:29

www.ash.org.uk/information/facts-and-stats/fact-sheets

wallison people were asking if there was any harm to the DSS

spidermanspiderman Wed 09-Jan-13 11:13:57

She is not being unreasonable at all. The reason for her decision could be anything from increased awareness of the dangers to her son's awareness due to age.

On a day out, after smoking, do you stay away from step son for 20 minutes and wash your hands? If not, then you are poisoning her child and causing actual damage to him. Also by allowing him to watch you smoke you are setting a bad example. Grow up and read the scientific facts.

Sirzy Wed 09-Jan-13 11:16:32

I wonder if he has started talking about you smoking and that's why it has become more of an issue in her eyes?

Personally I am with her anyway, but DS has asthma which is made worse by cigarette smoke so I avoid any home where people smoke with him.

Nancy66 Wed 09-Jan-13 11:17:35

I bet you anything you don't smoke five a day. Smokers always massively under-estimate how much they smoke.

BunFagFreddie Wed 09-Jan-13 11:19:40

YANBU, you're smoking in your own garden. If you were sitting on in your living room blowing smoke in his face and telling him how great smoking is, then his mum might have a point.

Smoking is foul and addictive and I've stopped again. Seeing how smokers are social lepers these days, I don't think many children will end up as smokers themselves. Asking someone not to smoke outside in the own garden is a bit rich imo.

KellyElly Wed 09-Jan-13 11:20:12

I think she's being unreasonable and she has absolutely no right to tell you what to do in your own house unless you are doing something illegal. If you were smoking indoors and her child was breathing it in she's have a point. Also many people I know who have these hang ups about their children seeing people close to their children smoking are quite happy to get tipsy/pissed around their children, which is just as bad.

FeckOffCup Wed 09-Jan-13 11:21:44

*She is BU.
She's no right to tell you what you can do in your own home, and you don't do it anywhere near him.*

I agree with this, DSS mum seems like a bit of a control freak if she thinks she has the right to dictate to you that you mustn't have a smoke in your own garden while her DS is in the house with his father. As for the stuff about smoking chemicals hanging around on clothing, the child is 8 not a baby so how much physical contact is the OP likely to have with him anyway? I don't think you are doing anything wrong, the child will see people smoking in all sorts of situations and it's up to the parents to educate the child on the reasons not to start smoking, not try to dictate everyone elses's behaviour.

BunFagFreddie Wed 09-Jan-13 11:23:11

*You could always just....give up.

[dons hard hat] *

If OP only smokes 5 a day that shouldn't be too harrowing. It will do you good in the end. There are stopping smoking threads on MN.

[dons hard hat]

HungryHippo89 Wed 09-Jan-13 11:27:24

Nancy66 - It is around 5 a day ... somedays I might only have 2 and other days i might have 7 ... I know how much I smoke because I know how many I buy and since it is a small amount I can keep track .. no reason to under-estimate how much I smoke on a forum when i'm asking for advice about smoking ... as the amount could change peoples opinion. Some smokers might lie about it or be in denial. But I see no point in not being honest when i'm asking for advice...

I also don't think in 20 years time there will be as many smokers as there is today with all the price increases information that's about. When children get to 18 and they make the decision wether to go to a shop and buy cigarettes they will be a lot more informed

SarahWarahWoo Wed 09-Jan-13 11:27:49

NHS advise that you shouldn't be around babies or children for at least 20 minutes after finishing a cigarette as you exhale toxins and carbon monoxide for that long and that you shoukd always wash your hands, I am not sure what the comment about "having it on your clothing" is about though? Is that true?

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Wed 09-Jan-13 11:28:19

She's right you know. You could always....<whispers>.....give up.

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