The following rant inspired by someone who wondered if stopping smoking for vaping was “trading one bad habit for another”. Do you think of vaping as a “bad habit”, or a well-adjusted part of your life? We’d love to hear your comments.
Why is vaping a bad habit? I mean, yeah, it’s a habit.
Is this about using nicotine versus abusing it? I agree that that’s a personal decision. But you’re trading nicotine for nicotine.
But does the person next to me need to know what mg I’m using? What if I’m on 0mg? Is the fact that I’m exhaling vapor that smells like cookies bothering him enough to stop? Is his aftershave bad enough for me to ask him to move?
How deep does it go? I recognize that I am a user of nicotine. What vaping has done is make me face the fact that I’ve been so for years, and that that, and the behavioral/habitual patterns of smoking, are what I liked about the habit. I’ve kept those and basically nothing else from smoking, so I feel that I’ve improved my life.
Now, what do I think is the difference between using nicotine, and abusing it? Interesting question — how many PAD of analogs do you need to smoke to be an “abuser” instead of a “user”? (That’d be a controversial damn topic to bring up with a group of smokers!) It just depends on how your own body metabolizes nicotine.
For me personally, I struggled with going up from 12mg to 18mg, but in retrospect starting at 12mg was too low for a 200-pound guy who’d smoked, not heavily, but regularly. My wife was very supportive and wanted me to not feel bad at “failing” at 12mg. But I wouldn’t go higher than 18 (personally) and I’m going to make it a goal to get down to 12mg in the next few months.
That’s just my personal feelings about nicotine. It makes you feel good, let’s not pretend otherwise. And we have a very convenient delivery method.
Here are my wife’s thoughts on the issue:
I always loved smoking. Unlike many people, I didn’t pick up smoking until after college, but it was a perfect match for my nearly-OCD need to always be fidgeting with something. Like David Sedaris once described, smoking gave me something to do with my hands and mouth and an excuse to get out of my seat every hour or so. But, after 7 years, I had become ashamed and disgusted by my habit – the smell on my house and clothes, the compulsion to hide my habit from my colleagues, always feeling like I KNEW better.
Vaping has taken away the shame of smoking and I’m not embarrassed to admit that I’m a former smoker – in fact, I feel like telling more people so I can express my pride in having quit and to evangalize the benefits of vaping. I’m realistic about the relative dangers that I, personally, face. I’m a high stress person and when my hands are empty, I have bad habits of picking at my fingers/lips or of eating something. I also get anxious and/or angry pretty easily and being able to excuse myself for a vape outside is a useful habit to control and calm myself. I tend to think in the long run, a 6mg vape of Volcano’s Pear-adise is better for me than “just a few Skittles” that usually becomes the entire bag. It also forces me to drink more water to avoid dehydration and thus reduces my former dependence on Diet Coke.
I’m not arguing that vaping is healthy, just that for me, it’s my preferred option given my particular issues, needs and history. Other people with different habits and desires may find that quitting vaping is the best option for them, but that’s just going to depend on the person. I’m hoping there will be more definitive research on vaping and nicotine in the future – I’ll watch for them and keep adjusting my habits as necessary.
Vaping also allows me to have funny conversations with colleagues, such as the guy who told me he was scared to switch to vaping because he wasn’t sure about having all that water vapor in his lungs.