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?

LavenderPots Wed 09-Jan-13 09:57:22

you say that you have explained how bad smoking is for you and that you really should stop, perhaps you should but into place some steps to stop smoking to show him how difficult it is / talk to him about why you started smoking and why it isn't a good idea for him to start?

i can see it from both sides really as she doesn't want him to start smoking etc but i think realistically its more likely to be peer pressure to 'just try it' rather than because you smoke, and also as you only smoke about 5 a day as he will be at school most of the day he must only see you smoke maybe 2/3 a day?

<not helpful sorry>

DoubleMum Wed 09-Jan-13 09:59:15

If you smoke less than 5 a day it shouldn't be hard not to do it in front of him anyway?

Keychain Wed 09-Jan-13 09:59:20

I agree with your DSS's Mother to be honest. Children are much more likely to do as we do than do as we say. I really don't think it is an unreasonable request to be honest...

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Wed 09-Jan-13 09:59:47

Yes but you are still his parent, and so a role model, not just someone on the street. You won't be able to hide the fact you smoke. You'll smell of it for a starters.

DoubleMum Wed 09-Jan-13 09:59:55

But if I were in her position I would be thinking the same, sorry.

DozyDuck Wed 09-Jan-13 10:00:27

Why would you want to do what your step mum does? Über uncool.

ResolutelyCheeky Wed 09-Jan-13 10:02:41

I think his mother has every right to express what she wants her son to be exposed to.

What you do with that information is up to you.

I think telling him its bad for you and that you really should stop and then you don't is just giving him a very confusing message tbh.

NaturalBaby Wed 09-Jan-13 10:02:48

I wouldn't want anyone smoking in the presence/company of my dc's so I wouldn't say she's over reacting.
I would also be insisting you don't come into contact with the child for at least 20 minutes after finishing your last cigarette - even if you smoke outside the smoke is still on your clothing and your breath so you are bringing it back inside the house and passing it onto the child.

Do you really think the child is doesn't breathe in any smoke because you smoke a few meters away?

Seeing you doing it normalises it in the comfort of his own home though, and I guess he's at an age to understand that now. I think she's being perfectly reasonable actually - the chemicals will still be on your clothes and skin even if you do go outside so can still cause him harm. Plus it's no good telling him it's bad so you really should stop - actions speak louder than words - it would be far more powerful if he saw you actually quit rather than just paying lip service to it.

The big thing surely is that it's not good for his health and if, as you say, you only smoke less than 5 a day then surely it's not a big deal to stop when he's around? Sorry, YABU.

WaspFactory Wed 09-Jan-13 10:05:08

YANBU It doesn't sound like a problem to me, your smoking doesn't sound all that glamorous, unless you're looking at him through the window saying 'hey, look how cool I am'.

Wallison Wed 09-Jan-13 10:07:20

Does the lingering smell of smoke on your clothes/hair really harm other people you go near after you've finished smoking? Genuine question.

WaspFactory Wed 09-Jan-13 10:09:27

I remember seeing an article showing smoke particles floating around a home but I think that was about smoking in the house. Doubt there would be much if any problem if you always smoke outside.

I have a much bigger problem, my Dad chain-smokes in the house and I will find it very difficult to take my future baby there sad

WaspFactory Wed 09-Jan-13 10:09:43

article = advert

HungryHippo89 Wed 09-Jan-13 10:10:26

I don't think I would find it that unreasonable if she had said it from the off ... not leave it untill 4 years down the line... On a normal weekend he doesn't really notice when i slip outside because i will go to wash the pots and just pop out after i've done ... I was thinking more along the lines of ... So if we are going out for the day I can't have a cigarette?

I 100% support not smoking close to him after all he hasn't asked to smoke but i just don't see the point in hiding it when as soon as he goes out in public he can see it for himself ... And as he grows up there will be other people that smoke.. I suppose i'm more of a believer that it is a personal choice when you get to the age where you actually smoke properly. For example me and my sister were aware of smoking through other family relatives (not immediate family but still close family we had regular contact with) And I smoke and she doesn't.

Thanks for the advice though I generally thought she was being unreasonable but I guess i was only seeing it from one side ...

sweetkitty Wed 09-Jan-13 10:14:44

It would annoy me too TBH

If your only on 5 a day do you have to smoke around him, if he's there and you need a fag can you pop out for a 5 min walk or are you in sole care of him?

Waspfactory - my Dad chain smokes too as did my MIL, MIL especially was so pro smoking, she smoked around my neisse for years. When DD1 came along we did visit her but told her she had to smoke outside, same when she came here, it was like we asked her to donate a kidney the palaver every time she had a fag. Ironically she dropped dead of a heart attack 4 years ago, the cause smoking sad

24joy Wed 09-Jan-13 10:16:23

Your fine doing what your doing IMO. If anything, you're 'de-glamourising' it arn't you?

mrsjay Wed 09-Jan-13 10:16:56

I smoke My dds hate smoking and never thought it was glam or cool children are not daft,
OP she is being a bit unreasonable I do think you could say smoking is vile, but after 4 yrs she knows you smoke why is she worried now,

HungryHippo89 Wed 09-Jan-13 10:17:06

Everybody knows they shouldn't smoke but they do ... I know I shouldn't but I enjoy it ... I just figure soon she will be asking me to give up my bottle glass of wine on a Saturday because I'm glamourising alchohol and he shouldn't be so aware of it at such a young age ...

WaspFactory Wed 09-Jan-13 10:17:17

Sweetkitty - exactly the same, my sister tolerated him and my step-mum smoking around her daughter for years but there's no way I would. If/when I finally have a baby I might pretend it's got asthma.

barleysugar Wed 09-Jan-13 10:17:25

As an ex smoker, I have to agree with your mum. You may be cautious about shutting the door but the smell and therefore the residual smoke lingers on your clothes, breath and hands for at least 30 minutes after a a fag.

Wallison Wed 09-Jan-13 10:18:53

Yes but does that actually harm people?

WaspFactory Wed 09-Jan-13 10:19:53

Hungry - how dare you drink wine within 10m of precious SS? He will inevitably become a chain-smoking alcoholic at 13 and it will be YOUR fault.

HungryHippo89 Wed 09-Jan-13 10:21:09

sweetkitty - No his dad is in the house who doesn't smoke. And I do pop out I will either just go out and take rubbish out to the bin and stand at the end of the garden or take the dog for a walk ...

Cantbelieveitsnotbutter Wed 09-Jan-13 10:21:30

My ds pretends to smoke, he's barely and I mean barely seen my mum do it.
Maybe he did something like that and your getting the blame.

I can half see her point (lets face it, no one wants to encourage it) and half see yours, why now? it's your choice and he's not affected. What about them electric ciggies for when he's there? Yes potentially your glamourising it but your doing your best.

puts on my flame suit jacket

On the plus side she / he thinks your glamourous

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

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.

ILoveSaladReallyIDo Wed 09-Jan-13 11:30:04

"After all he can walk through the high street and see loads of people smoking? "

mmmm do you though? up until very recently yes, but now smoking is not socially acceptable at all, I can't remember the last time I was at a bus stop with anyone standing there smoking. The only places I now ever see smokers is outside the hospital and SOMETIMES in the outside areas of bars (but even there its become rare), and no longer okay at outside tables of cafes where people are eating

Its no longer okay to walk down a street passing people by while smoking

10 years ago, yes it was a very normal sight, but not now

If someone smokes at home (even outside) children are more likely to smoke

OP I think you are a bit out of date, I think you'd have got unanamous YANBUs 10 years ago since you are doing it outside, but it really is seen as something different nowadays and I think many parents would agree with your partner's ex so she is NBU

OrangeClub Wed 09-Jan-13 11:30:06

How on earth does smoking outside in the wind, cold and rain make it a glamorous thing to do? She's telling you not to smoke when your DSS comes over, what next? This would annoy me massively and I say this as a mother of an eight year old boy who goes to his dad's overnight each weekend. I would not dream of telling my ex husbands partner what to do in her own garden.

Do we really think that kids not seeing things stops them from having addictions when they get older? My parents were teetotal. Never drank around me or my brothers. Both of my brothers are/were alcoholics (one died last year as a result).

BunFagFreddie Wed 09-Jan-13 11:31:33

It's funny how times change. My DM told me that she remembers talking to the health visitor whilst breastfeeding me. She had a fag in her hand and was drinking a cup of coffee. That was in the 1970's, back in the days when smoking and drink driving were cool.

HungryHippo89 Wed 09-Jan-13 11:31:44

I could always give up you are right - but I will give up when I want to give up not when i'm being dictated asked to. What's the point in giving up something when you are not ready to give up? Because surely it's easier to start again because you aren't in the correct mindset that you don't want to do it anymore .. you are giving up because somebody else is telling you that you have to give up ...

ILoveSaladReallyIDo Wed 09-Jan-13 11:33:00

"Do we really think that kids not seeing things stops them from having addictions when they get older? My parents were teetotal. Never drank around me or my brothers. Both of my brothers are/were alcoholics (one died last year as a result)"

sure there's always exceptions, but seeing any bad lifestyle choice does go a way to normalising it and does increase your liklihood of trying it
- I've only ever tried vices that I have first witnessed someone else doing!

manicbmc Wed 09-Jan-13 11:35:33

A bit precious, especially if she's only just trying to impose this on you. Does she do a lot of that kind of thing?

How does she protect the poor lad from all the traffic fumes? Does he have to wear a mask when near cars?

You continue with your 5 a day, OP.

spidermanspiderman Wed 09-Jan-13 11:36:08

Ok so because her son is 8 it's ok to poison him. Seriously, read the facts.

LadyBeagleEyes Wed 09-Jan-13 11:36:09

Quite Hippo, I've given up in the past, 18 months was the longest but it was my decision and on my terms.
I will do it again when I feel ready but the one thing that makes me want to light up is being told what to do.

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Wed 09-Jan-13 11:38:47

Told or advised?

Smoking is shit.

OrangeClub Wed 09-Jan-13 11:39:16

The point is, as with any addiction, you can't give up because someone else says that you have to. The OP is not smoking in the house. She is smoking five fags a day in her own garden, which she is legally entitled to do.

The lady who lives with my ex smokes. As far as I know she does it in the garden. My son mentions it now and again but he says that she does it outside. I really can't see the problem to be honest.

mrsjay Wed 09-Jan-13 11:40:09

Ok so because her son is 8 it's ok to poison him. Seriously, read the facts.

she has 10 cigarettes over a weekend he is there Id imagine he will not be poisoned there is so many other things harmful to a child she is outside fgs where things like cars are and pollution is in the air unless he is in a bubble then he is being poisoned every day ,

HungryHippo89 Wed 09-Jan-13 11:43:58

manicbmc - We get a bit of it - this is probably the worst though, we get a lot of "you can't do that because mummy will tell you off" and she likes to control our time with DSS like what we are doing/where we are going and if she knows about something ahead of time that she doesn't like the sound of she will make up something so that DSS can't go. A while ago we were going to a wedding and she said the it was a family members party that same night and DSS really wanted to go to the party not the wedding - the next day we picked DSS up and he cried because he thought he had missed out on this family members party because she made up a total lie. She also came round wailing when DSS was scratched by the cat ... DSS was scratched by the cat for trying to pin him down on his knee after being warned multiple times this would happen if he did that kind of thing.

However I think I will still be enjoying my 5 a day - But with lots of handwashing and will brush my teeth after ...

spidermanspiderman Wed 09-Jan-13 11:46:30

Actually, what the op has been asked to do is not smoke in front of dss, not to stop. The op is whining about not being able to smoke on days out. She could however still smoke on days out if she wanted but not in front of dss (which would be possible) and then wash hands and avoid physical contact with dss for 20 minutes afterwards (again completely achievable with an 8 year old).

BunFagFreddie Wed 09-Jan-13 11:46:55

I think people are getting hysterical about this 3rd hand smoke. Seriously, people might not smell nice after they've had a fag, but they are hardly poisonous. We have so much pollution, nasty chemicals in cleaning products and in our food, yet people worry that someone who smokes might be poisonous to the child?

CatsRule Wed 09-Jan-13 11:49:06

I'm afraid I agree with DSS's mother!

The toxins will still be on you...your hair, clothes, breath and as an asthma sufferer smelling this from people alone triggers it. You maybe can't imagine what my lungs feel like when someone smokes too near me but it's awful...not worth the 5 cigarettes!

You say you don't smoke within a few meters from him...does your smoke know not to go near him? Glamourising or not there are health issues there.

Also, if you only smoke 5 a day, why do you smoke? Genuine question there. Why not give up and spend the money on treating yourself in a less harmful way?

Someone mentioned the ecigarettes, The World Health Organisation are warning that these aren't as 'healthy' as they are made out to be. They also haven't been around long enough for extensive tests to be done on the smoker or the passive smoker.

I wouldn't allow a smoker to smoke near...few meters or my son. Obviously I cannot control this on a public street but I certainly can in my home and he just wouldn't be in theirs. Passive smoking is not good for people...they don't have the choice though, a smoker chooses to smoke. I also have the added worry for my son incase he develops asthma, which I know smoking won't necessarily cause but it won't help either!

BunFagFreddie Wed 09-Jan-13 11:49:21

Scratched by the cat, ffs. I feel sorry for you Hippo. She sounds like she just wants to stir up trouble with you because you're with her X.

spidermanspiderman Wed 09-Jan-13 11:49:30

Whoever said 'I would imagine he would not be poisoned' is blatantly incapable of reading the scientific facts. Is the world still flat in your world?

manicbmc Wed 09-Jan-13 11:49:39

It's a control thing then and best ignored. You're not smoking around your dss. You aren't making him think it's a wonderful thing to do. And it's not like you're a chain smoker.

I'd love to see how any research can prove or disprove that particles on clothing will give a child a chest infection/asthma/cancer. There is no way you could ethically conduct a survey of that nature and control all the other factors and pollution.

FeckOffCup Wed 09-Jan-13 11:51:06

Ok so because her son is 8 it's ok to poison him

Hysterical much? She smokes outside, not in an enclosed space with the child hmm.

olgaga Wed 09-Jan-13 11:51:18

You have three very good reasons to give up smoking. The negative impression on your SS, relations with his DM, and for the sake of your own health.

Frankly if you are really smoking just 5 a day it shouldn't be that hard. If you really aren't prepared to contemplate giving up for the above very good reasons, wearing a nicotine patch for two days a week is not a lot to ask.

I smoked for 3 decades, gave up two years ago. Believe me, it doesn't get easier to give up, it just gets harder and harder. So do it now.

Whether or not your SS sees you smoking at home, he'll smell it when you walk back in the house, on your clothes, your breath, hands and hair. And boy does it stink. As an ex-smoker I'm amazed how strong and acrid the smell is, even if you just walk past a smoker, or one walks in the room.

If you're smoking in front of him on days out, whether in the open air or not, I would be very unhappy about it if I was his mum.

So what if she hasn't complained about it until now? Maybe your SS has begun to notice it, and told her he doesn't like the way you smell. It was around that age that my DD started to fuss about the smell and get irritated about me disappearing!

You also need to bear in mind that he is at an age where they will be discussing smoking at school, in an extremely negative way.

WorraLiberty Wed 09-Jan-13 11:56:36

She's being a control freak.

What next? Can you stop eating McDonalds in front of him? Can you make sure you hide any bottles of alcohol in the house including the empty bottles?

You gained too much weight over Christmas but you look can you go on a diet please and stop glamourising being overweight?

Silly woman.

KellyElly Wed 09-Jan-13 12:00:49

*mmmm do you though? up until very recently yes, but now smoking is not socially acceptable at all, I can't remember the last time I was at a bus stop with anyone standing there smoking. The only places I now ever see smokers is outside the hospital and SOMETIMES in the outside areas of bars (but even there its become rare), and no longer okay at outside tables of cafes where people are eating

Its no longer okay to walk down a street passing people by while smoking

10 years ago, yes it was a very normal sight, but not now* I take it you don't live in London. I see people smoking every day.

Dahlen Wed 09-Jan-13 12:02:16

I don't smoke. I don't like smoking. It stinks. I think this is a totally hysterical over-reaction.

The OP is smoking outside. And I read other posters on here claim that the so-called 'third hand smoke' hypothesis has been totally debunked. Apparently it was based on people's perceptions of how dangerous they thought smoking was, not on any scientific research.

Which isn't to say that smoking is perfectly ok, because we all know it isn't, but there are no passive smoking risks associated with the set up described by the OP.

As for the glamorising of smoking, unless the DSS follows her outside, I shouldn't think he sees the OP smoke apart from on very rare occasions. And skulking outside for one, shunned to the garden, is hardly glamorising it.

puds11isNAUGHTYnotNAICE Wed 09-Jan-13 12:06:32

I think she had the right to ask you not to do certain things around her son.

I wouldn't want anyone smoking around my DD. I don't think its precious, i think it's sensible.

And anyone who says kids aren't stupid blah blah blah. I started smoking when i was 12 because my mum did. I never actually saw her smoke until i was 16, but i could smell the smoke on her and i found the cigarettes in her coat. If she hadn't smoked, i doubt i would have started if she hadn't smoked as none of my friends did.

manicbmc Wed 09-Jan-13 12:09:12

It's the OP's partner's son too though. Does he get no say in this?

thecook Wed 09-Jan-13 12:11:04

YANBU The mother is. Does she cover his eyes when they walk down a street together so he doesn't see anybody smoking? Good god, pity that is all she has to worry about.

spidermanspiderman Wed 09-Jan-13 12:11:28

Dahlen I believe you are referring to the 2009 study published by the journal ' paediatrics'. There have been several more scientific studies done since, I would recommend reading those first before commenting on third hand smoking.

Wallison Wed 09-Jan-13 12:12:01

That link to the 'fact'sheet from Ash doesn't work for me, and even if it did I don't know that I would trust an organisation that campaigns against smokers to provide unbiased scientifically proven evidence that someone who has smoked a cigarette 30 minutes previously is recklessly endangering the lives of everyone they go near due to their coat being a bit stinky.

HungryHippo89 Wed 09-Jan-13 12:12:29

puds in response to that - neither of my parents smoke never have done, my mum despises it. My first cigarette was at 13, because i knew she hated it so much I had a cigarette to piss her off when she banned me off the PC. I thought that if I went out and did something she hated she would rather have me indoors and therefore my punishment would never be a banning off the PC...I Doubt if my mum hadn't expressed so much hate for it, i wouldn't of done it because I wouldn't of known how much it would piss her off ... And that is genuinley true not just a smart answer to you ...

thecook Wed 09-Jan-13 12:17:47

OP same background as you. Started at 13. Ah the days when 10 Regal King Size were 73p......

Seriously tell her to fuck off. If it was me I would light up in front of her and the child to piss her off.

olgaga Wed 09-Jan-13 12:18:01
olgaga Wed 09-Jan-13 12:19:49

The above links are not from Ash. They are the result of medical research. See for yourself.

It's very sad to see people in denial about smoking even now, especially where children are concerned.

OrangeClub Wed 09-Jan-13 12:23:22

Hungry - I agree with this. Teenagers love to do anything adults don't want them doing. It's very difficult as a parent to know what to say to children about smoking/drinking/drugs. You don't want to be seen as permissive but at the same time taking a hard line stance on an issue just seems to make it more attractive to the rebellious teen.

Wallison Wed 09-Jan-13 12:24:45

From the telegraph article:

"Tiny particules of pollutants found in cigarette smoke contain chemicals which in large numbers can cause cancer. "

So in large numbers these chemicals can cause cancer, but tiny particules of them are found in cigarette smoke? Well, clutch my pearls and call me Nancy.

"Studies have also shown that even small amounts of exposure to this kind of pollutant has been associated with reading problems in children. "


5madthings Wed 09-Jan-13 12:32:12

Yanbu, you are taking reasonable precautions and going outside etc.

Sorry but the mum is being controlling.

Wallison Wed 09-Jan-13 12:32:44

Maybe the poor wee mites are so blinded by the clouds of smoke wafting from the coat of a person who has smoked 30 mins previously that they, choking and sobbing, just cannot see the page in front of them.

Or maybe, just maybe, it's horseshit.

NaturalBaby Wed 09-Jan-13 12:37:34

ifancyashandy I don't think you've understood my post. I 'enforce' no smoking around my dc's by moving them away from smokers. I'm fortunate enough not to know any smokers so they're never really exposed to it. I was saying if it was my 8yr old and his step mum was smoking while he was in her care, I would be saying .......

If an adult caring for someone else's child was doing something that is proven to be harmful to health then the parent has every right to ask the carer not to do it, just because the carer is in their own home it doesn't make it acceptable behaviour.

'I will give up when I want to give up not when i'm being asked to' hmm
The only reason my parent gave up smoking was because he was asked to by all his children. Responsible parenting has consequences.

extracrunchy Wed 09-Jan-13 12:37:37

I'm afraid I'm inclined to agree with her, not just for his health (and yours!) but also because you are a role model, and no amount of telling him it's bad is going to convince him if you do it anyway.

Proudnscary Wed 09-Jan-13 12:37:45

To the parents who think they hide their smoking from their kids - you don't. They know. My dh thinks because he sneaks round the shed, washes his hands, chews gum that they are oblivious. They've known for years! Smokers have no idea how much smoke sticks to their hair, clothes, breath no matter what they do. Also the kids see the big billows of smoke coming from behind the shed and have found his fags.

OP I'm actually with you. Obviously smoking's a mug's game and it is not great role modelling. But it's not illegal, you are an adult and it's not easy to give up as my dh has shown (given up so many times and gone back to it - I hate it but I accept he's a grown up...and he's addicted).

Allonsy Wed 09-Jan-13 12:40:06

Personally i would not be dicated to what i can and cannot do in my own life/garden/etc by my partners ex. You are not smoking around her child or in the home, what next you cannot be seen drinking alcohol, playing the lottery etc, frankly ridiculous.

maxomummy Wed 09-Jan-13 12:43:30

Sorry, YABU. I know it's hard to give up smoking yada,yada,yada, personal choice etc. but it is harmful to children, and smoking while out for the day with DSS will expose him to some of the chemicals as well as normalising the behaviour. IMO his mother is trusting her child into your care (and his Dad's) and she has every right to stipulate something like this for the sake of his current and future health. I had no choice as a child, my Dad smoked in my early years, my Mum never stopped and all my brothers and sisters smoked and I hated it, children don't have a choice so surely you can show some restraint for 2 days a week in exercising your personal choice or are you really that selfish??

olgaga Wed 09-Jan-13 13:12:34

surely you can show some restraint for 2 days a week

I agree with maxo, that really is the point here.

OP and others seem to think this is a "control" issue, but in fact it's the mother of your SS being concerned at his exposure to your harmful addiction.

For the sake of your SS, and family relations generally, you need to respond to this in a mature way. The right thing to do would be to agree not to smoke 2 days a week - use patches if necessary.

It will only continue to cause problems for your OH (and by extension, you) otherwise.

Plus it will give your lungs a rest and do you good!

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Wed 09-Jan-13 13:14:21

Seriously tell her to fuck off. If it was me I would light up in front of her and the child to piss her off.


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