When I found out I was pregnant with my first child, my husband redoubled his efforts to quit smoking. His smoking had always been a point of contention in our marriage. I wanted him to quit. He wanted to quit too. But he also didn’t. He tried to explain to me that he hated smoking but he also loved it.
But with a baby on the way he knew he had to do whatever it took.
He smoked his first cigarette in second grade. His first quit attempt was in sixth grade. I can’t tell you how many quit attempts he made during our marriage. A lot, that’s for sure. But he was determined to make it work this time.
The last quit attempt he made was half way through my pregnancy. It was a rough one. He made it four days, past that magic point where the physical withdrawal is supposed to stop. We were both pretty devastated when he started smoking again.
That’s when he told me he wanted to try electronic cigarettes. “Well, that’s dumb”, I thought. “Why doesn’t he just quit?”
Looking back, I’m embarrassed that I thought that. I knew it wasn’t that simple. I was there when he would wake up sobbing in the middle of the night from cigarette withdrawals.
He didn’t think he could give up tobacco. But he didn’t want to keep smoking cigarettes all day either. He had hatched a plan that involved using electronic cigarettes during the day and smoking cigars or pipe tobacco at night or on the weekends. He thought maybe if he had some real tobacco to look forward to he could tolerate the ecig.
I was annoyed. It sounded like a way for him to get around actually quitting. Plus, I was skeptical about how safe electronic cigarettes even were. It seemed likely that they were full of weird chemicals.
So he bought an electronic cigarette from a gas station and I started doing research. I’m a researcher by nature. I like to get to the bottom of things.