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How do I stop DS from smoking?

(16 Posts)
PattySimcox Mon 10-Oct-11 18:14:39

Or even can I?

His friends Mum mentioned to me that one of the boys friends has been smoking and when I asked DS about it he confirmed it and said that the boy had been trying to encourage him to try it and made fun of them when they didn't.

They are only 13 and I know how easy it is to bow to peer pressure at that age. So how can I discourage him from smoking without glamourising it? Should I play it cool and be relaxed about it?

Feel very unequipped to deal with this - feel like I'm still stuck on the beginners parenting module and then someone has thrown me into A Levels sad

AgentProvocateur Mon 10-Oct-11 18:19:22

I would tell him that he's obviously got too much money if he can afford to buy cigarettes, and stop his pocket money.

When I found my 15 year old DS's cigarettes, I found out where he'd got them from, and I went to the shop and told the shopkeeper that I'd go straight to the police he sold them to underagers again.

I think it's something that most of them try, but 13 is very young. I would try and discourage that friendship, and I wouldn't be playing it cool either!

upahill Mon 10-Oct-11 18:20:13

Well this worked for my mum ( I was the teenage smoker)

I got pocket money every week and I loved buying records. I even spent my dinner money on records.
Mum found out that I was smoking so as cool as a cucumber she just said 'fine, that's ok, now I know you are a smoker when I do the weekly shopping I'll buy you fags for the week instead of pocket money.

I never smoked another cigarette after that!!!

I don't know what the answer is tbh. Mine don't smoke (12 and 15) Over the years rather than giving them horror stories about health which I think not many can relate to I have talked about it from the financial side and what they could do with the money instead.

Good luck.

GnomeDePlume Mon 10-Oct-11 20:31:04

My DCs are under no illusion that if they smoke then I will cut off all pocket money and I will gate them until the end of time. It also helps that I have made no bones about the fact that my father died of a smoking related cancer before any of them were born and have made sure they know enough detail of his death to see no glamour in it. Sounds harsh I know but my job is to protect them not be their friend.

Bossybritches22 Tue 11-Oct-11 09:31:20

Rather than go down the cancer route initially (brought it in later) I have emphasised how smelly it makes you, gives you lines, costs a bloody fortune etc

With 2 girls the looks & self image angle can work too.

I also talk about poor old Roy Castle who worked in smoky pubs & clubs all his life but never smoked.

Basically you have to try & work out your own angle & hope it works, the will do it they want to despite our best efforts.

After all we are mere parents & know nothing do we, being so ancient? wink

feedtheblighters Tue 11-Oct-11 10:43:57

We had a similar conversation at the weekend. My 14yo told me how one of his mates at school was actually being teased for smoking! I am a smoker and he doesn't approve - good for him. I did however go on to say how disappointed (great word to use with children) I would be if he were to take up smoking. How much I regret ever having tried that first one and that even though I did give up for many years I am now back smoking again.
You can of course point out the health cost and antisocial aspects as well. I wouldn't go in all guns blazing. Kids can take great pleasure in acting contraire to our wishes on occasion.
I wouldn't advocate this but when I was growing up, my friends parents found out she had been smoking. They bought 20 ciggies and made her smoke the lot, one after the other! It did work though, even now quite some years on, she does not smoke.

PattySimcox Tue 11-Oct-11 11:32:22

Thanks for all those suggestions - like feedtheblighters mentioned my concern about going in all guns blazing is that it immediately makes kids want to do it.

mumsamilitant Wed 12-Oct-11 12:39:37

I'd be inclined to try to steer your DS away from that particular friendship. This is what I did when I found out one of my 13 year old DS's friends were smoking.

DS also has asthma so I have always told him because of this he must never smoke.

PattySimcox Wed 12-Oct-11 12:48:48

Don't worry mumsamillitant friend and I are doing all we can to discourage our boys friendship with the smoker. Thing is having been a spirited naughty teenager, I know how much kids want to be friends with the less desirable ones your parents dislike, so its such a fine line to tread to get it right.

mumsamilitant Wed 12-Oct-11 14:44:26

Yes Patty it is. Luckily my DS is in Sea Cadets which helps so he doesnt really have much free time at the weekends. Ialso dont let him "hang out" anywhere and encourage his friends to come to ours so I can spy keep a beady eye on them.

Like you, I was a bit of a rebel etc. when I was young which makes it worse somehow as we know what can go on dont we.

basildonbond Wed 12-Oct-11 15:17:44

You might not have to do anything to discourage it. Ds (14) was telling me the other day that some of the boys in the 6th form smoke but none of his friends do and it's "really uncool". He thought all the characters in Mad Men were disgusting because they chain-smoked all the time ...

moonbells Wed 12-Oct-11 15:21:48

If ever I get faced with this one, I'll just take him to work for a day or two.

Ought to do the trick. I work in a cancer treatment centre.

CantThinkofFunnyName Mon 17-Oct-11 14:35:50

DS1 (year 8) has today, under duress, confessed to "trying" smoking. Apparently because a new friend smokes. He is 12. He has always been totally anti-smoking, smoking related lung cancer is in the family, he's asthmatic - and yet he still tries it.

I was 13 when I started smoking. I stopped earlier this year - 30 years later! I've been down every route I can possibly think of to prevent him from even trying that first cigarette in the first place. Didn't work.

Will watch this thread with interest for inspiration.....!

PattySimcox Mon 17-Oct-11 23:15:48

Thats the thing, it is so so addictive and so harmful, yet at their young age they just can't get their heads round it.

Guess parents have been saying that for decades confused

dizzyblonde Mon 24-Oct-11 17:03:44

My FIL took all his kids to cancer wards (he is a Doctor) and told them about his Father who died of lung cancer at 44, they all ended up smoking. Teenagers see themselves as invincible.
Mine haven't tried it yet and seem to be appalled at the thought of it, the cost is a big deterrent.
I'm hoping we're past the main danger point with the older two as they're both at uni and have never been particularly susceptable to peer pressure and am crossing my fingers for the 15 year old as he thinks smoking is disgusting, long may that continue.

lashingsofbingeinghere Mon 24-Oct-11 17:57:52

Appeal to their logical, left brain. The tobacco companies make money out of basically maiming and killing people. Is that the sort of thing they want to support with their own money/pocket money? Makes you a bit of an idiot really, not to mention morally dubious as you are propping up companies that deliberately target young people in the developing countries.

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