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(62 Posts)
louise35 Sat 20-May-06 09:51:50

Last night I was downstairs in the living room and suddenly got the smell of cigarettes. I went upstairs to my 11 year old DD'd room and the room was full of smoke. I asked her where the cigarette was and she had the cheek to deny that she'd had one. I finally found out that she's thrown it out of her window as she'd heard me coming up and I found it burning on the grass below. She had stolen it from my DH's coat pocket which was in the back of the car with her when we had been out for a ride. I am absolutely furious with the pair of them, my DH was supposed to have stopped smoking over a year ago but I have suspected he has been sneaking them, but to leave his coat with cigrettes in the pocket where she could get them in my opinion is unforgivable. I am feeling really resentful of DH at the moment and I cannot even bear to look at him apart from giving him dirty looks, but the problem is I really don't know how to deal with DD. She swears she's never done it before but I don't know what to believe. Its breaking my heart that she might be going down the smokers path. Please, I need some advice from anyone else who has caught their kids doing this.

chapsmum Sat 20-May-06 10:13:02

louise seh needs to know that it is against the law and very damaging to her health.
frank talking
Perhaps it would help if you lookied on line with her at the effect that smoking has.
She has probably been curious and if you didnt hear a fit of coughing she has probably not even smoked it.
Untill it is legal for her the decision is out of her hands. however she is old enough to be able to understand her body. And you can be quite frenk with her IE I know you can do this if you wnt behind my back I cant watch you 24 hours. However I want you to be able to tell me all the facts about it before you even considdr this.
MAke sure she looks at healthy and diseased lungs from smoking and also people (not too old) using oxygen, coughing up crap etc.

zippitippitoes Sat 20-May-06 10:16:09

I would suggest you don't overreact. She's no doubt wanting to know what the big deal is with cigarettes.

i think the hard part for you is distinguishing between your dh and dd as clearly you have problems with both of them smoking

chapsmum Sat 20-May-06 10:16:29

ahh yes and highlight the cost, find her something she really likes and make sure she knows that she will never be able to realisticly afford it if she gets hooked on cigarets.

zippitippitoes Sat 20-May-06 10:27:31

I would go down the bad skin, bad breath and money route..I don't think kids are very impressed by the lungs as they don't see themselves in that way (not sure adults do weither|)

chapsmum Sat 20-May-06 10:30:00

suppose you might be right. but to be honest the thing that pu me off was woring with patient who were so resticted by their breathing but stll looking for ciggaretts, its madness!

DominiConnor Sat 20-May-06 11:15:00

Cigarette addicts don't respond to seeing others die. Never been able to work out whether the carbon monoxide and nicrotine addles their brains or whether they were just born stupid.

My mother spent 8 years slowly dying of lung failure, oxygen tube at home, the works.
My sister died of cancer, a little more quickly.

Does it stop my family smoking ? Have any of them given up ?
Parents in my family don't stop their teenage kids starting either.

The term you're looking for is evolution in action.

We should stop all this crap of warnings on fag packets, "safer cigarettes" etc. Require a high minimum of carcinogens and optimise the burn for maximum of unspent organic oxides. Fag addicts talk of "sweet" tastes. You may recall that lead ethanoate used to be used as a sweetner. Faggies see it as fashion accessory, lots of dyes with useful side effects. Prussic acid makes a nice blue.
At least it would remove the defectives from the gene pool before they got anyone else from passive smoking.

NotActuallyAMum Sat 20-May-06 11:24:52

Agree with others who have said best not to over-react and also agree I would highlight the cost issue as health issues won't sink in. Tell her that if she smokes when she's older she won't be able to afford to go on holiday, own a car, own a house etc.

I can still remember one of my best friends at school, we were 13 at the time and she'd had a row with her mum. She said something like "I know what I'm going to do I'm going to start smoking, that'll p*$$ her off!" This was 21 years ago - she still smokes now. All because she knew that it would annoy her mum big time

thewomanwhothoughtshewasahat Sat 20-May-06 11:27:47

she's curious. and I am not suprised you are annoyed with dh, for as long as he smokes it is very difficult to appear logical and adult about her and smoking. maybe this is the kick up the bum he needs to stop completely? talk to her honestly, tell her how completely stupid and pointless smoking is - but do it in a calm and factual way - I agree with the idea of doing some research on the internet together. You need to get across to her the truth of the matter - that you are concerned because 1. smoking kills and 2. you love her. don;t let her think that this is a this is a battle ground - with you and her on opposing sides - because that gives her a quick and easy route to rebellion - unless you plan on keeping her indoors throughout her teenage life you can't stop her smoking by exercising parental authority. you can only persuade her into making her own decision on this. tbh, looking back I wish my mum had done this with me. I think 11 is young enough for you to come together on this one. Don;t be corss with her, treat her like a grown up who is capable of understanding the implications of her own actions. with any luck she might respond like a grown up. (and then maybe the two of you can gang up on your dh to get him to quit!)

thewomanwhothoughtshewasahat Sat 20-May-06 11:31:03

agree about the cost thing - but do that short term as well (not just holidays when she's grown up - true but a bit remote) - ie when she's 14 and gets £40 a month spending money (or whatever 14 year olds get these days) what would she rather spend it on? clothes? make-up? going to the cinema? or fags?

charliecat Sat 20-May-06 11:37:40

shock tactic. Its really not worth it. This may upset some people WARNING

louise35 Sat 20-May-06 11:51:45

Thanks for all your replies, I haven't said anything to her about it this morning so what I'll do for the time being is hope that its a one off. When I got to the bottom of the story, apparently she was rummaging in his pocket to get his mobile phone to play a game on it while we were on a trip in the car and she's obviously found the offending articles. I'm hoping that it is genuinely just a one off opportunistic thing that she's done, finding the cigarettes by accident then grabbing the chance to pinch one and try it. I WILL sit down with her later and go on the internet and show her the effects of smoking and do what many of you have said and explain the money thing. I don't think 11 year olds really think about money issues so much so it would probably be quite a shock for her to learn that a 20 a day habit will cost in the region of £50 per week. I just feel really sad about it at the moment, she has always insisted that she hates cigarettes because of the smell etc but I am in a funny situation where if DH is still smoking how can I preach about it. I can't even bring myself to speak to him properly yet, maybe be will realise just how p*ssed off I am and get his act into gear. He did really well 18 months ago and did actually stop so I suppose I am even more disgusted with him that he kicked the habit then decided to take it up again.

morningpaper Sat 20-May-06 11:53:51

I'd be really tempted to make her sit down and smoke a whole cigarette until she threw up

That tactic worked for my ex-hubby

katiebl Sat 20-May-06 12:38:09

What others have said is right - telling her what damage it will do to her lungs etc won't work. Kids and teenagers think their invincible. Personally I'd go down the 'how it will affect her looks' route. It needs to stop early, cos the longer it carries on the worse it will get.

Is she doing it to be like her dad? That's why I started as a teenager - I wasn't close to my dad and it was something I felt would bring me closer to him, plus the forbidden thing is always attractive. The me and him against mum (who hates smoking and who I am very close to). It sounds stupid (and was really stupid) but I wanted to feel close to my dad so it seemed like a good idea.

Just some ideas. I hope you manage to stop her. I'm still smoking years later and have tried to quit so many times.

louise35 Sat 20-May-06 13:01:11

I'm getting really upset about it now to be honest, the more I stew on it the worse it gets. I've just told my hubby that I'm completely disgusted with him and that I hope he's really proud of himself for being the one who let her get hold of the cigarettes in the first place. The problem is my DD already suffers from ADHD and epilepsy so I feel that the poor kid has enough health issues to deal with without the effects of smoking aswell but DH is so bloody laid back and can't understand why I'm so upset about it. I ought to get DD to have a good look at him and explain the reason why he's so wrinkled and looks at least 10 years older than his 36 years is due to smoking, maybe that might shock her. I don't smoke (used to about 13 years ago, only socially, but never really liked it anyway and stopped without any problem) and I've just had my new passport photo done and I've really not changed at all in the last 10 years where as hubby looks about 50. Perhaps I could show her these photos and maybe she will understand what it can actually do to you. Sorry for ranting, I think secretly I'm hoping DH will look at this and read it and maybe understand how I'm feeling, maybe a bit of a guilt trip might make HIM take stock and possibly try to quit for the sake of his daughter.

grumpyfrumpy Sat 20-May-06 13:31:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

QE Sat 20-May-06 13:50:48

You will never get a teenager to see it your way. Pointless to try tbh.

Tell her that under no circumstances will you condone her smoking in the house, in the garden or anywhere near you. Tell her (yes tell her) that you can't stop her smoking but would hope she was sensible not to. If she's going to do it at school then nowt you can do about it tbh. Express your sisapproval of it. But telling her not to will make her do it.

If she's given all the facts then she has to make her own choice albeit with the restrictions outlined above.

SenoraPostrophe Sat 20-May-06 13:54:18

louise - just because she had one doesn't mean she'll have another.

also I think you're being a bit hard on your dh. leaving fags in his coat pocket is hardly the same as leaving them on the coffee table or something - your dd shouldn't have been going through his pockets.

It might be an idea to chat to your dd about the aging effects etc of smoking (the health thing really doesn't affect teenagers ime), but go easy on her. Most teenagers experiment at some point.

Mercy Sat 20-May-06 14:12:15

Agree with Senorapostrophe.

Teens aren't interested in health unless it affects their appearance so try emphasising how it will give her bad breath, make her clothes and hair smell and make her skin look really old & wrinkly.

edam Sat 20-May-06 14:32:51

The idea of forcing her to smoke a whole cigarette all the way in front of you might have some currency, you know. Friend of mine was forced to smoke a whole packet non-stop when he was caught by his mum (although he was older). Made him sick and put him off for life.

(Speaking as a smoker, I wish someone had done this to me).

foxinsocks Sat 20-May-06 14:38:52

yes I agree with others who say let her smoke one (in front of you). My mum was a 60 a day chain smoker and she once caught me trying to sneak one (can't remember how old I was, prob about 13). She let me light it and then made me inhale it deeply (v key, don't let her just pretend to smoke it!) and I nearly threw up right there and then and apart from one or two in my student days when I was v pissed, I've never had another!

Would also emphasise the bad breath and smell issues.

Auntymandy Sat 20-May-06 14:56:26

Not read the thread only your post Louise and I think you should believe her that it was a one off and she was just trying it!

Tell her you are upset and disapointed, but not cross!
And ask her if she thinks she will do it again... go from there

louise35 Sat 20-May-06 15:25:15

Senora, the reason I'm being hard on DH is because he actually stopped 18 months ago then on the sly has started again. The fact that has made me really angry is that he's been dishonest about it and has been hiding cigarettes in coat pockets and I've also found them in various places around the house but when I've asked him if he's started smoking again he says no. Its the sneakiness that really gets to me and the fact that he hasn't got the guts to just admit that he's started again. I never nagged him when he did smoke, I left the choice to stop up to him and was really proud when he did stop, but now I really worry about his health, he's gained alot of weight over the years and also has trouble breathing at night when he's laying down, hence why I'm now losing my temper with him for starting up a habit again which is probably going to aggrevate his breathing problem. He's also one of those stubborn types who will not visit the doctor.

I do agree that DD should not have been rifling through his pockets but she did it while in full view of us in the car and she was looking for his mobile phone. Anyway thanks again everyone for all your advice. I have calmed down bit now and I'll give all your ideas some serious thought before I decide on the next course of action. .

fattiemumma Sun 21-May-06 13:49:16

OMG glad you have sorted it out. i would have had a proper frak out session and made her feel really guilty.

I'd show her the stories of that 12 year old thats pregnant and tel her that thats wher you end up by behaving like that....really lay it on thick.

actually, scrap that. i'd probably go downstairs in complete shock, cry for hours and wonder where i had gone wrong.
Why do we always seem to blame ourselves??

BadHair Sun 21-May-06 14:01:04

Just to add that it's best not to go completely over the top. My parents made it abundantly clear that they hated smoking, smokers and anything to do with cigaraettes. So it was like a red rag to a bull with me - I did it because they didn't like it, in a roundabout sort of way.

My friend's dad had the best strategy. He caught her smoking so he bought her 20 JPS, sat her down and made her smoke the lot, one after the other. Took her hours. Once she'd finished he told that he'd do it again next time he caught her with a fag. Surprisingly enough she's never touched them again.

Anyway, good luck and hope whatever you do works.

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