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Kids and Tobacco? Answered

How do I deal with teens that want to try tobacco? I don't want them addicted, but I don't want to inspire disobedience and rebellion. It's not a moral issue with me, but it is an health issue. Ocassional tobacco use doesn't bother me at all, but addiction is unhealthy. So what to do... Forbid them? Let them try it? Yell at them? Ignore it?


Depending on the age of the teen, I would say for older teens explain your concerns and present the facts that you have available to you. At that point you've done all you can do. They will use the information they have and make a decision based on that. For younger teens I would say to do the same but you have to put your foot down and say they aren't allowed to even try it until they are older. Ultimately it is illegal until a certain age. Once they are that age, it is their decision to try it or not. Under No circumstances should you buy it for them. For full disclosure, I am a hardcore Smokers Rights Advocate. I don't believe in forcing anyone to start, nor encouraging them to. But if they are legal and they want to try it, that would be their choice. If they are fully informed, hopefully you have done a good job of raising them so they can make responsible decisions. And if that is the case, the decision they make will be a responsible one, even if it is one you don't agree with.

That's a good answer. I too am in favor of smokers rights. I can't stand cigarettes, but an occasional cigar is nice. The kids are mostly interested in chewing tobacco/snuff. They are young, and we have an AMAZINGLY open dialogue. The hard part is saying "no", yet keeping everything open and honest, while not being the chump who's kid is smoking behind their back. Thanks for the input!!!

been a parent is hard i use tobacco i have been smokeing since i was 14yo it only takes 1 but i do addvice you not to just iggnor it becouse if you do thay will get it someware so i sugest trying to show them how bad it can be if that does not work let them try it becouse sorry to say it would be better that thay get them from you and get addiced then them steeling it or borrowing some from some stranger on the street and getting a infecion or worse trust me i know how teens act sorry my addvice could not be better any coments email me at campingfuelking@aol.com

well to start i am a dipper and have been for several years. and in my experience the best way to show your kids that tobacco is not for them is to give them copenhagen wintergreen dip and have them keep a quarter sized pinch in til they puke

Google image "lung cancer"

All smokers know that smoking is bad for them. Everyone knows smoking is bad. People will smoke if they want to and only quit when they are ready. I quit because I nearly died. i wish I could bottle the wake up call and share it with every smoker I see, especially the young ones. Good luck quitting smokers. Kim's and Bryan's stories were very motivating for me: http://whyquit.com/whyquit/A_Kim.html http://www.whyquit.com/

I've tried cigarettes, black and milds, never had chew but, when i tried them, I didn't like them very much. I've actually tried them a second time, not sure why I did, but I still didn't like them so I don't do it. I'm 16. I don't like the feeling of Marajuana either (Who hasn't tried it for experimental?).

i smoke maybe 1 cigarette a week and the ocasional cigar. Im also 16. im not addicted (at least I dont think I am) is that normal?

Many years ago, I tried cigarettes.  I liked to smoke cigars, but my girlfriend hated the smell, even though she smoked cigarettes.  I never learned to like them.  I still smoke a couple of cigars a year, like if a friend has a baby or something.

I really like chewing tobacco, but it's still unhealthy.  Pot certainly has it's pros and cons, but I haven't even been around it in 10 or 15 years.

well im now 18 and have been smoking since i was 16 but am trying to quit i wish i had never started because i have real trouble breathing  but if you don't forbid it like my parents did they might be better about it than i am (i am down to a pack a weak from 2 pack a day)

One a week's not too bad, but 2 packs a day is a bit excessive!  There is a fine line between "forbidding" something and just  "dis-couraging" it.  I never wanted to make something like that turn into a point of rebellion.  I just wanted them to see it for what it is, a bad/expensive/unhealthy habit. 

I chew a little tobacco, and basically told the kids if they wanted to, they had to do it in front of me, not behind my back.  They  both tried it, but chose not to make a habit of it.

ya well i am trying but it is hard to quit i tried cold turkey but that ended badly  

Yep.  Cold turkey is miserable, and rarely works.  If you can get the nicotine addiction dealt with, then it's just a matter of picking another habit (like chewing gum) that's not so harmful.

My uncle tried to quit cold turkey.....yea that didnt end too well for him, he thinks thats what started his fibromialgia (proabley not spelled right)

Well ,  Ol' George figgerd that wuz better than sendin' 'em t' their first day at school chewin' on a pacifier !

So long as you don't do as certain white trash hillbillies I grew up around , 

Ol' George Sandell would wean his younguns off th' pacifier by givin 'em a chaw of Red Man !

Ooooh.  That's rough.  I've seen kids as young as 6 or 7 with a chaw in his mouth, and that bothered me.  But weanin' ones on chaw, is astounding.

just tell them what they use on tobacco to make it taste better (radioactive substances) and the fact that it makes your skin look like leather and the fact that oh yah it will kill you and thats coming from a teen who likes fire and insense and the smell of non tobacco smoke

I'd try some logic: for example if one wouldn't add a handfull of sand to his car's engine oil, there is no point in sabotaging one's health too. If one wants freedom, he must remember freedom comes from inside, for even a prisoner in solitary confinement can think. In order to guarantee that there are conditions to have freedom in other aspects of life, thought and state of mind must be as independent as possible from any kind of addictions.

Excellent points. Addiction really inhibits freedom!

skunk ol'man, when I was young enuff to "go with th' crowd" I simply could not afford to smoke !! When I had grown to th' point to where I had a job( and therefore, money) I flat did not want it !! (besides , I wuz smokin' sumpthin else entirely!! )

Makes sense to me. The kids can't afford to make it a habit. Every spare cent goes to ammunition, fishing gear, and cycle parts.

I have to agree with the consensus here. If one is really aware of and understands the dangers of addiction to smoking, eventually one can make an intelligent decision about it.

As far as human rights are concerned, I agree to a point: for instance, if I invited a trucker friend of mine into my house, I would hope he would not bring his tractor trailer into the living room, because he was more comfortable inside the cab. I would expect the same from a smoker (BTW: I am an EX-smoker, & was addicted for 25 odd years, and finally quit in 2002).

. Zippoman hit it on the head. Give them the facts and tell them how Mom & Dad feel about it. Judging by what I've heard of you and your kids, they will probably listen. They will probably have to try it out - that's just what kids do - but it sounds like you have a better than average chance of getting them on the right path. Being able to frankly talk about it is a very good sign. . By the time they are teens, if you haven't already instilled some sense in them, it's too late to worry about it. ;) From what I've seen (granted, not a whole lot), you got lucky (surely it is not due to your Hillbilly parenting skillz heehee) and have some pretty sensible kids. . Good luck.