Monday, 24 February 2014

I love vaping, and I don't want to quit

Before the weekend I think there was some panic spreading on twitter regarding some change in the TPD that seemed to be a ban on flavouring in e-cigarettes. I didn't really have the time to look into it then, as I was on kind of a mini-vacation this weekend. So I went looking for some info today and it seems to me that it's not about banning flavours anyway but rather a ban on flavour labelling, which of course is totally unreasonable and according to Clive Bates also not really the intention. Reading this article,, it looks more like a mistake that has been fixed now, at least for e-cigarettes.

But this got me thinking a bit. What is it with vaping that keeps me from going back to smoking? Why is vaping so much more effective than chewing nicotine gum? Even though they both give me the nicotine I'm addicted to, vaping gives me a whole different experience and satisfaction. I've realized I wasn't only addicted to nicotine, I was addicted to smoking. By that I mean the whole experience of smoking, not only the nicotine but I was psychologically addicted to the ritual as well. And after failing to quit by nicotine gum, and then succeeding (easily) to quit by e-cigarettes, I've realized that the addiction to the ritual is just as difficult to get rid of as the addiction to nicotine, at least it is for me. And vaping gives you the opportunity to keep that ritual, and the nicotine, without destroying your body. But this really don't explain why I keep vaping and don't go back to smoking. I mean the smoking of course also gives me the nicotine and the ritual right?

There are several reasons for that: A huge improvement in my health, I don't smell like shit any more, my clothes don't smell like shit any more, I don't harm others with my habit, and I don't have to go outside in the cold to vape. But all these benefits I would have gotten from chewing gum as well, wouldn't I? So why did I go back to smoking then? One reason was the ritual, as I said above, but also the taste of a cigarette. It used to be fantastic. Used to be... now they taste like shit. The taste of Scopes Raspberry on a Hellfire Mega or some El-toro in the mini is gazillions of times better than the taste of a cigarette. And I can experiment and find new flavours and new equipment that gives me even more flavour and vapour (yeah I'm a geek). So the vaping actually gives me a whole lot in addition to the ritual and the nicotine. The nicotine gum (and other NRT) only takes something away. That is the main reason for their success in my opinion. It's important that regulators are aware of this as well, so they don't regulate e-cigarettes in such a way that they also end up only taking stuff away, cause then they will be just as useless as gum and patches.

Now some anti-e-cig people would probably say I just proved their point. E-cigarettes doesn't really help me quit, it just let's me continue my addictions. Well, they are right. But why is that such a bad thing? I'm also addicted to coffee in the morning (you want to tread lightly around be before I've had my coffee in the morning), not only the caffeine but also the ritual of having a cup of coffee in the morning while reading the morning newspaper. No one objects to that. I can also experiment with new coffee making equipment and new flavours. So the addiction to the ritual of coffee in the morning, for me and probably millions of others, is quite similar to the addiction to the smoking ritual. So what is it that makes the smoking ritual something we want to get rid of? Why don't we want to get rid of coffee in the morning? Of course this is because the smoking ritual is associated with smoking (obviously), which is bad for your health (and other peoples health as well). But the ritual in itself won't hurt anyone, neither yourself nor the people around you. So no, vaping doesn't help me to get rid of my addictions, it just gives me the opportunity to continue without killing myself, and others around me. That is why they are so successful. I think most human beings have some ritual they are addicted to, coffee in the morning, reading a book before going to sleep, chewing gum, different kinds of food that "belongs" to different situations. Most of them harmless, and therefore accepted by the public. Try to take one of your rituals away and you'll end up just as grumpy as a smoker without access to cigarettes. The ritual of smoking, and vaping, is not what harms people, and therefore not what you want to get rid of. What e-cigarettes actually do is not only letting you keep that ritual, but it even makes it better. Rather than just taking something away, it gives something more. And that is the "secret" to their success.

I love vaping, and I don't want to quit. And that is the reason I managed to quit smoking.


  1. Very true.

    Nicotine gum or similar quitting medicines
    would not have worked for me,
    simply because I would not have tried them.

    I enjoy smoking more than I dislike its drawbacks.
    I'm sure there are others who feel the same way.

    But when a product comes along that appear
    to be both better and healthier,
    and CAN be cheaper as well,
    it makes perfect sense to try it out.

    ( Possibly not cheaper for those of us prone
    to gadget addiction, but hey, its even more fun to be had :) )

    So vaping just might make me stop smoking,
    by actually providing a better alternative.

    Still in the starting phase of this ,
    but that is infinitely farther than any
    of the stopping products ever got :)

  2. Oh! Goodness, yes! I so agree! A friend and I purchased our first vapor set up within a week of each other. Our reasons for trying vapor cigarettes were different, mine were health related while my friend's were financial. Both of us had smoked for over 37 years. I had quit once for four and a half years by using Zyban but started again. My friend never quit nor had any intentions of quitting even though she was going to try vaping to save a little money. She was going to alternate vaping and smoking. I, on the other hand, was hoping to use the vapor cigarettes to quit using tobacco. I figured, from previous attempts to quit, that it wasn't just the physical addiction that I was battling. I was attempting to give up a habit, a ritual that I enjoy and have always enjoyed. My friend has always said that she enjoyed smoking too much to ever quit. Within four days, my friend was down to one tobacco cigarette a day. I was at three to four. It has now been two weeks. My friend won't be buying another pack of cigarettes when she runs out of the pack she has left. I have nine cigarettes left in a pack. I haven't smoked one in eight days. Looks like I'll be throwing away a half a pack of cigarettes....... and I'm thrilled to be saying that! I am no longer a smoker.
    So, what you've got here is two heavy smokers who were able to, within two weeks and without insane withdrawal symptoms, give up a 37 year addiction. And I am positive that it was possible for us to do so because we didn't have to give up the ritual that we so enjoyed along with the tobacco. We can have a "smoke" with our coffee, when we take a break during the day, as we're driving or when we're talking on the phone. Hell, we can "smoke" in the house now if we want to! And we can "smoke" all kinds of interesting flavors that you sure can't get in a tobacco product!
    Now, some folks will say that we haven't truly kicked our addiction since the vapor liquids we're using still contain nicotine. But I beg to differ. Nicotine patches and gums should cure the addiction if nicotine is the only addictive substance found in tobacco products. Since the success rate of these products is very low, I'd say that we have kicked, if not all, at least the most dangerous part of the addiction. I find that I would put nicotine in the same category as caffeine..... a substance that will give you a bit of a jolt or a buzz. Something that may not be 100% good for you but won't give you cancer......or a suspended license from driving drunk.
    So, to each their own. You drink alchol, eat junk food, use tanning beds, jump out of airplanes, put botox in your face, drive your car too fast......whatever your thing may be. My friend and I? We'll drink a cup of coffee and vape a little nicotine and count ourselves lucky that we found something that broke our addiction to tobacco! We're looking forward to breathing easier, being more active, looking (and smelling!) better and doing a lot more laughing and singing and dancing! Things tobacco (and our own stupidity)
    took away from us.

    1. Thanks for sharing your story :) And gratz on throwing the cigs out :)

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