Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Mother-to-be trying to kick the habit
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Adapted from a recent online discussion.

Dear Carolyn • A dear friend of mine is pregnant, which is fantastic news. She also smokes. She has cut way down since she got pregnant, which is great.

She is incredibly sensitive about it. When people ask her about smoking, it makes her extremely anxious and actually seems to make her want to smoke more. She KNOWS she needs to quit, so continually telling her that will not work. What can I do that will encourage her to stop smoking, but not put her on the defensive?

Friend

Dear Friend • She needs to stop smoking, yes. She also knows she needs to stop smoking, has cut back on her smoking, presumably has a doctor or midwife to guide her ongoing effort to stop smoking, and gets so rattled when people bring up her smoking that she possibly smokes more.

So, what's your role here? None, unless backing off counts.

Re: Friend • Unless you're talking about telling her how proud you are of her progress, acknowledging how hard it is to get over an addiction, and offering help when she gets the urge by going out for a walk with her or offering other distractions?

Anonymous

Dear Anonymous • Those work for me, thanks, but only if they work for the smoker. Trying them must include careful attention to how they go over — specifically, to whether she sees these efforts as patronizing, as veiled pressure or as triggers for wanting a smoke.

Dear Carolyn • Do some research on smoking-cessation programs geared toward pregnant women and share the results with your friend.

Anonymous 2

Dear Anonymous 2 • Ack, no, please don't. Smoking is bad for a fetus, but it doesn't render an adult woman incompetent. She can look into programs herself. First rule of help, don't provide any that people haven't requested and/or they can easily tend to themselves.

Carolyn Hax's column runs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Article Tools

 Print Friendly
Photos
 
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.