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Smoking with a baby

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Darnda Wed 14-Sep-16 20:06:43

So my husbands promised to give up smoking several times, managed it once for a few months but that's it. He promised he would stop before our wedding but didn't, then he promised he'd stop before our first child was born and after the baby came he hid the fact that he hadn't stopped for several months until he was caught out. I'm so sick of it, I used to smoke so I do understand it's hard but I've had enough now. Our baby is almost one and he still smokes away then grumps about changing his clothes before he holds the baby. I've snapped tonight as I've done a load of baby washing and he's outside smoking right next to it instead of down the side of the house so I've had to wash it all again. It's not the money or the principle I just want him around for as long as possible for me and our baby. It kills me that he doesn't seem to care. If I pester him about it he gets all defensive but if I say nothing he just merrily carries on so I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place. AIBU? How would you handle this?

TurquoiseDress Wed 14-Sep-16 20:15:26


My DH sounds similar- when I pregnant with our toddler, he made noises about cutting down/giving up...but never did.

When our baby was tiny I used to get so upset, he'd go out to smoke & just about manage to wash his hands before holding our child.

He's had a persistent cough recently which I had to practically march him to see the GP about- he's been told there is an infection in his lungs but as yet (a couple of weeks down the line) he's not yet bothered to pick up the prescription.

It's so frustrating- he gets all defensive when I try to bring the subject up.

We have good friends who are avid smokers, they have a young child too- the mum smoked all the way through her pregnancy, they smoke around their child too.

He has made comments in the past that- so and so smoked while she was pregnant and their baby has turned out perfect.

I get so annoyed as when we're with other groups of friends he is literally a non-smoker and gets annoyed if I ever mention his smoking- it's like he wants to pretend he does't smoke.

Sorry I've gone off a rant and haven't really helped with any advice- just wanted to say that I feel your pain!

jimbob1 Wed 14-Sep-16 20:19:42

I am about to adopt a child who's birth parents smoked whilst pg and when born. Although baby only stayed with family a short time, lo suffers from coughs that last 3-4 weeks at a time and wheezes alot.
Lo has been using an inhaler since less than 6 months old. That is the reality of smoking and I honestly would be pressing harder to stop.

RubbleBubble00 Wed 14-Sep-16 20:21:19

my dh smoked. He gave up with first 2 dc (lapsed in the middle) and didn't quit with 3rd. He works away so not huge issue. He hides around the side of the house and smokes as kids don't know he smokes.

He just can't seem to give up this time, he's tried cold turkey, patches, vaping. He gets a bit upset about the fact he can't give up - discovered this when he was getting all defensive and arsey about my nagging to give up.

I can't force him to give up and I'd be deeply upset if he went on about what I was eating and needed to loose weight - which is my biggest problem.

So we agree rules. He smokes outside the house, wears a jacket and jacket gets hung just outside the door in porch area

MissKatieVictoria Wed 14-Sep-16 20:22:25

It's a habit he needs to stop, NOW.
My mum quit smoking after her dad died from smoking related secondary brain cancer when i was 5. She wanted to be here for me and my sister. She wasn't a chain smoker, maybe 5 a day or there abouts, and she just quit cold turkey one day. The damage was already done though, she died from smoking related secondary brain cancer, just like her dad, when i was 20, after more than 11 years not so much as looking at a cigarette.and i'm devastated by it every day. You really can not quit "too soon", every cigarette could be the one that kills you eventually.

Mybeardeddragonjustdied2016 Wed 14-Sep-16 20:22:52

Ask your midwife for some leaflets about the dangers. A smoker living in a house with a newborn ticks a box on the risk of cot death. And the guideline is to wait 30 mins after a cigarette before holding a baby. Hopefully when he reads these in black and white he will realise it isn't just you nagging!

clare2307 Wed 14-Sep-16 20:24:13

I could have written this many years ago... My oldest is now 7 and youngest just turned 1 and he is STILL smoking! Not excessively and not round the kids but it still bugs me. Not a lot I can do. He is an adult who can make his own choices. I have learned to live with it, the only other choice really is to leave and I wouldn't leave over that alone. Sorry to say, but chances are you need to make your peace with it otherwise you will make yourself unhappy over it.

MuseumOfCurry Wed 14-Sep-16 20:25:06

To be honest, I'd only marry someone and have children with them if I could live with their current set of habits. People don't change very easily.

It's not nice, but he's an addict.

justilou Wed 14-Sep-16 20:27:26

My mum smoked heavily when she was pregnant with me (and all my life)... my severe, lifelong asthma suddenly stopped when I left home. Then when I had kids of my own I couldn't breastfeed because wouldn't you know it... it's not uncommon for DNA to get fucked up by pregnant mothers and I had deformed boobs. (3 milk ducts in one and four in the other when average is 32). Mum has end-stage emphysema and is still trying to give up.

Darnda Wed 14-Sep-16 21:00:16

Ummm... A mixed bag. Some saying I need to make my peace with it and others stressing the importance of stopping. In all honesty my gut says I will never make my peace with it. I appreciate the point about accepting someone with their habits but he promised so faithfully he'd stop before our wedding and I foolishly took him at his word. I feel very let down, exponentially so now our baby is here. It's starting to change the way I feel about him but if I tell him that no good will come of it. I've lost a lot of family to cancer and he hasn't lost any (his family don't smoke but a lot of mine did). I'm swinging from being so angry i can't even speak to him to so upset I actually can't speak. I've literally reached my limit with his bullshit. WIBU to give him an ultimatum? Do they ever work?

Shelleysmum Wed 14-Sep-16 22:37:57

I'm a children's nurse and we see the effects of parents smoking everyday. Your child is twice as likely to be admitted to hospital if you smoke whether you smoke outside makes little difference. The chemicals come in through your breath, hair, shoes etc, children's lungs are sensitive and need protecting

OwlinaTree Wed 14-Sep-16 22:53:56

Sympathies, op, it must be hard for you, especially as you have managed to give up. Problem is, he has to want to give up, and at the moment he doesn't.

I think I would have one final conversation with about it, starting all your reasons for him giving up etc, and stressing how you will support him if he does decide to give up... Then I'd leave it for a good while. Nagging won't help unfortunately.

FATEdestiny Wed 14-Sep-16 23:22:27

Nagging will do nothing. You cannot and will not make him give up, so make your peace with that.

That said, you can and should be disappointed by his smoking. Don't just accept it as ok - make him feel like an outcast. Be openly protective of your child's health. Make smoking difficult for him, give him the extra chores it creates, like washing. Make him go not just outside, but away from the house. Make him change clothes, wash hands, brush teeth. If he's going to smoke, he has to accept the additional responsibilities that means without grumbling.

I'd also insist on a financial sacrifice: "you spend £40 per month on cigarettes, that is the cost of Sky Sports so I am cancelling Sky Sports". It needs to be something he doesn't want to give up so he has to choose, cigrettes or that. You getting a treat of equivalent monetry value has less effect on him than him having to lose something he values for cigarettes.

I'll give you the other side though. I smiled (heavily - 20-25 per day) through 3 pregnancies. I pretended to give up when PG with DC1 but didn't. I didn't even pretend with DC2 and DC3, and smoked through 19 years of parenting.

Then I gave up. Not just gave up, i stopped for ever and have a completely different mindset now. I went on to have DC4 as a non smoker.

None if my children had/have any medical conditions from me smoking. They were all breastfed (although dc3 for not as long) and would occassionally cosleep too. No allergies, no asthma, no ill health at all. While smoking is, without question, terrible and I would hate it if I was the non smoker and DH smoked, it's not like it is some form of death sentence for children. As with all addictions, he will only give up when the decision to do so is his.

FATEdestiny Wed 14-Sep-16 23:25:22

10 years of parenting, not 19 (!)

Also, I meant I smoked through 3 pregnancies. Also I probably smiled through them too 😊

Jizzomelette Wed 14-Sep-16 23:59:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

sashh Thu 15-Sep-16 05:03:11

He just can't seem to give up this time, he's tried cold turkey, patches, vaping. He gets a bit upset about the fact he can't give up - discovered this when he was getting all defensive and arsey about my nagging to give up.

My dad didn't give up smoking, he just decided to see how long he could go without a cigarette. For some reason this worked because it made it a positive. There is no way to fail, you might go 10 mins the first time, the next time you know you can do 10 mins so you do 11.

Other people were also more positive, his fellow drinking and smoking buddies would be asking, "How long is it how? Well I never would have thought it" rather than expecting him to 'cave'.

Not sure if it would work for other people but might be worth a try.

Btw dad has been seeing how long he can go for 40 years now.

kittyjewel Thu 15-Sep-16 05:18:04

Buy him an ecig. He will be surprised at how effective they are. I know loads of people that have quit using them.

engineersthumb Thu 15-Sep-16 05:31:51

Another ex smoker here! Try buying him a vape pipe. I finally quite after about 15 years but found it really hard for about 2 years. This was before vape pipes/e cigarettes became available. I badgered my parents to stop smoking when my son was born. I didn't expect it would work but I sent them an e cigarette and now 3 years on they have both quite after smoking 50 years!
Best of luck

WiddlinDiddlin Thu 15-Sep-16 05:31:58

I'd second the advice to buy him a vape stick but buy a GOOD one.. go to a vape shop and ask for their advice on it.

Most smokers need to start out with something that delivers a decent nicotine hit quickly, and tastes like tobacco - even though most will go on to vaping fruity or sweet flavours in the end.

Look for something with variable power, and a tank with variable airflow, as these affect the amount of vapour produced and what it feels like to actually draw on and take vapour into the mouth and then into the lungs (you want mouth to lung, not direct to lung too!)

I went from 20 a day, for 25 years, to a vape stick in about a week, haven't looked back!

engineersthumb Thu 15-Sep-16 05:32:42

Quite = quit!

Superstar90 Thu 15-Sep-16 05:39:12

YANBU - your DP is killing your baby, and himself, slowly.

Give him an ultimatum. He needs to put your baby first, not himself. He's an addict so he needs help to quit, but first he needs to want to. Sounds like he thinks 'it isn't that bad'. It is. need a third party objective person like a HV or dr to Say it so he'll listen.

Superstar90 Thu 15-Sep-16 05:44:06

Fatedestiny - that's awful. You should be throughly ashamed. You don't know you've not damaged your children - the effects are long term and might not be showing yet. How can you come on here and admit this like it's ok?
I would bet at least one of your dc goes on to smoke too - this will be from being exposed to your smoke. Any health problems they subsequently get from the smoking will therefore be caused by you too.

50ShadesOfEarlGrey Thu 15-Sep-16 05:54:55

My DDad smoked from the age of 13 to 60 and tried desperately to stop many times. Then attended a stop smoking course run by health visitors and that was it, he never smoked again. I don't know if they still run these courses, but they had an exceptionally high success rate, so worth checking out at your GPs surgery, or source something similar from the private sector?

londonrach Thu 15-Sep-16 06:02:57

I see the effects of smoking every day at work (nhs worker). I really dont get why anyone does it as it stinks, costs a fortune and effects every part of your body not just your lungs. Its a mugs game! I understand its hard to give up i know id struggle to give up chocolate. My heart breaks when i see someone in the ward who had a leg amputated due to smoking related problems and then pass them later outside the hospital smoking. Its not my job to ever advice re smoking but did once get a lad to give up before i trained by telling him he lose his penis... 😜 Yanbu re wanting him to give up op because of the children and i miss he could see some of my patients who as on oxygen now cant smoke and every single one of them (apart from one man) told me they regreted it. However he is an adult so has a free choice. As long as he smokes Away from the children and changes his clothes and washes his hands and has a shower afterwards. What worked for him last time?

RazWaz Thu 15-Sep-16 07:36:12

FATEdestiny - I wouldn't be so sure your smoking had no effect. When my I was around your children's current age my Dad would have said the same as you, but I went on to develop late onset asthma and now have serious breathing difficulties because of his smoking.

Just being near a smoker is enough to trigger an asthma attack in me now which terrifies me as I watched my best fried suffocate to death during an asthma attack on her own 10th birthday. I live in fear of something happening to me because of my parents selfish choice.

The damage of smoking can take a long time to appear, just because everyone is fine now, doesn't mean it will stay that way.

Every time you smoke you risk yourself and anyone around you and I wouldn't put up with a partner gambling my families life.

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