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Depressed


Roger C

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As you all know from my previous messages, I just started my treatments for lung cancer. One problem, I am still smoking. I know some of you are saying, this guy is a complete idiot. My nerves are shot and it still helps me to relax. Along with my oncologist, maybe I should be seeing a shrink. I know what the right thing is to do, but I am having a hard time. Thanks for listening.

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Hi Roger--Well beating yourself up won't help. We all know and understand how hard it is to stop smoking. Might want to tell your oncologists so he/she can recommend something. Also never hurts to seek out additional help. Maybe try a support group, helps to talk with people who have been there, done that. Just a thought. Ever need someone to talk to PM me. I'm a good listener and a old pro at this. Take Care. Rich

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Oh Roger!

Maybe you should think about asking your Doctor for some thing to help calm you down.. I never smoked and I know that its a hard habit to break but you really need to stop cold turkey today.. PLEASE STOP TODAY!! I'm sure you have family that Loves You, trust me you don't want them to feel the pain of losing you..

Michele

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Roger,

I smoked for 38 years, would panic if I started to run out of cigs. All doc had to do was say, "Does LC run in your family" Scared the chit right out of me, I quit cold turkey that day. That was January 10, 2003. Kept cigs in my truck for 2 wks after that, finally threw them away.

Just think to yourself, do I want to smoke or LIVE. It's like a person you don't like, you don't go and visit them. You avoid the situation, visualize those cigs as cancer cells, polluting your body.

I speak from experience. Prayers that you'll have the will power to quit... Pray about it.

Karen

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Roger, I hear what you are saying. This is a very stressful time. Most of us get depressed from all the stress. If you want the chemo to do it's best and want to quit , ask your doctor for Wellbutrin, it is an antidepressent and many have found it a huge help to quit smoking. What ever you decide, wishing you the best. Keep us posted.

Donna G

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Roger, of course you are having a hard time and the real kicker/catch 22 to this is that smokers' tend to smoke the most during times of high stress!! It's not a wonder to me that you haven't been able to just stop cold turkey. Please don't beat yourself up over this, you have enough on your plate right now. Please take care and if you're not already taking anti-anxiety medication for your nerves, perhaps you can ask your oncologist to prescribe one for you. God Bless.

Lynda

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Hi Roger,

With all the stress you have with treatments, the last thing you need is to add guilt for not quitting smoking. It is hard, so it is completely understandable that you struggle with it.

I also think it is a good idea to talk to a counselor, not only for the smoking, but there is a lot of anxiety and fears that come as a package with LC. I think one thing that most people here will agree has helped them are their handy dandy anti-depressants and anti-anxiety meds. I know that in the first couple of years from diagnosis I would not have made it out alive much less sane without them.

Plus many of them have the added benefit of easing the tension of cravings. In fact, my sister was prescribed Wellbutrin to help her quit smoking, and I was prescribed the same thing for my anxiety over my husband's condition. One drug, two solutions.

Ask your doctor about it, but don't think for one minute anyone expects you to be superman and be able to do it all alone. There is no shame in getting all the help available for any challenges you are facing.

God Bless, and good luck quitting

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Roger, you have gotten excellent advice from our 'experts' here. I WAS going to post something, BUT everything I would have said is already here. I have read that tx works better if you are not smoking, BUT beating yourself up over still smoking isn't good for your body right now either. Reread this thread and PM us if you need encouragement.

Kasey

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Hi Roger...

Sorry for the way you are feeling...I was depressed too when I stopped smoking and that was 7 yrs before I got LC....didn't even want to get up in the morning...but after 6 failed try's I was determined that those cig's were not going to run my life....I had 2 cigs left in the pack when I decided to quit and never finised them...Made up my mind and quit cold turkey...

So please Roger...you don't need a shrink...you just need determenation....you can do it...ESPECIALLY NOW....I just read this morning that a person who still smokes that has lung cancer cuts thier changes of survival by 50 %....That's a lot of percentage....So tuffen up buddy...YOU CAN DO IT....

Good luck...and God Bless..

PamS.

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Don't beat yourself up now when you need to be strong as you begin this journey and get thru these treatments.

The others are right. It's best to quit- for many reasons, but mostly because you want your treatments to be successful, you want to live,and you don't want to worsen or develop more health complications.

That said- as a former smoker- I know how hard it is to quit. Wanting to, and actually being able to do it are two totally different things.

Watch youself for a few days and make a mental note of "why" and "when" you smoke. Is it stress, is it when you are bored, is it after a meal, is it to avoid something....is it all of these things (all of the above for me)

And then armed with that information, make changes. If it is stress- find an alternative stress release. If it is boredom, find a hobby or activity that keeps your hands busy (I took up crochet, other people eat sunflower seeds or build model cars or whatever) If it is after a meal- change your routine and go for a walk or jump in the shower and brush your teeth! :wink:

I stopped going inside gas stations completely, don't shop stores that sell cigarettes, never walked thru the side door at work (where I used to smoke) and keep reminding myself of "why" I was quitting.

I had to change everything. I went to my doctor and began ZYBAN (Welbutrin). It helped for the smoking cessation, anxiety, mild depression and I just lost my "taste" for a cigarette eventually.

You know what the benefits to quitting are. When you are ready and armed with the tools you need, I am certain you can do it- not out of guilt or shame, but because you are strong, willing and self assured.

Be kind to yourself and take care of yourself. We are all here for you.

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With my lung cancer diagnosis 5 years ago :wink: I went on antidepressents and started therapy. I am still doing both because I feel so strongly that they are helpful to me.

I also did a lot of listening to Bernie Siegel's books on tapes, and also his meditation tapes.

gail

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I'm a never smoker, so I truly don't feel your pain, but I've seen it. One bit of advice: If you can't do it alone, GET HELP.

I suggest the counselor to get through the mind trip of the diagnosis, but for the smoking, get help. Gum, the patch, anti-depressants...a bit of help and a lot of determination and you're well on your way.

Good luck!

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Hi Roger,

Been there. I stopped twice, once cold turkey and once with the Patch. The patch was wonderful. It took away the cravings. The rest is the mental part. The first three days are the hardest. When I stopped cold turkey I literally slept for 3 days. With the patch I was able to function. I kept cutting it down until it was so small I was able to throw it away. I used to say to myself, "do I want to live or die". "Do I want to let these little white things control my life?" I didn't. Believe me, it's easier than you think....3 hard days.

Good luck.

Joan

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Roger; I tried to quit a number of times before I turned 40. when I turned 40, I kind of used that as a pschycological lever to quit. I thought I was getting old at the time (ha ha). I quit cold turkey in 1984. Maybe you can talk yourself into quitting thinking of it as just one more weapon to fight the cancer. Of course, getting on an antidepressant would help. I am using lexapro now myself.

Don M

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Another place you might want to check out is quitnet.com. It's a great support site, and I'm a member of a club there for cancer survivors and their families.

I agree with the advice given above as well. Never beat yourself up. It's self-defeating. The guilt alone makes you feel worse. You will make the move when you feel it's time, and since you posted about it, it's close to time.

Melinda

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I smoked for 30 yrs. and it was a 4-day hospital stay (diagnosed with lung cancer) that helped me quit. Once I got home, I knew that I could go at least 4 days without a cigarette. I also promised my doctors that I wouldn't ask them to do everything they could for me if I wasn't willing to do everything I could for myself -- quitting smoking was the biggie. I've stayed quit for 7-1/2 months now and only on very rare occasions do I have cravings any more.

Good luck with the treatment and with the cigarettes. I'm sending positive energy your way.

Trish

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Wishing you the best of luck. I know how hard it is. Im still puffing away myself(not as much but still...) and I see my dad suffer. I dont smoke when Im around him, but when the stress gets too big for me....I revert back.Ive found myself going 3 or 4 days with no smoking and then I lose it and buy a pack.

Hey, mabey we can support each other? What do you think?

But I do agree that guilt is the least needed emotion right now.

Take care,

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We don't realize how stinky we are while we smoke. I didn't... I do now, my SIL and Hubby's cousin smoke and boy do they stink and smell like an old dirty ash tray. No matter if you wash your hands or brush your teeth, you still stink and smell to others around you. I used to think that being outside, the smell is not that bad and the breeze would take it away, wrong...

It is a bad, nasty habit to break,

Just trying to give you food for thought,

Good Luck and prayers,

Karen

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first of all, you are NOT an idiot. you are human being going through an impossibly difficult experience right now. listen, I have never had LC but I have smoked and quitting smoking was the hardest habit I've kicked - and there were a few of them, believe me. :lol: if you WANT it, you can DO IT. if it's too much right now, it's too much.

YES, it's better if you quit and we will do anything to support you in that. but what matters most is that you give yourself a break!

I quit, finally, in 1999 with the patch. took the edge off the cravings, but I still went through the ringer. now, sometimes, I refrain from picking it up again - just cause I know I'll have to go through all that again!

we're with you roger!!

xoxo

amie

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I used the patch to help quit, I was so addicted to those cigarettes that the Zyban didn't touch the cravings.

i got an OK from my doctor to use 1 1/2 patch to get some relief from the cravings. I was still getting nicotine but not inhaling it into my lungs.

It took me awhile but I slowly lowered the strength of the patch. I did keep a few and cut them in fourths for the times I had to be around smokers and was concerned about relapse, that helped a lot. Eventually I didn't even need that but I still have a strong craving now and then, of course I'll never give in.

Nothing works for all of us, we all have to find our own way, it is so very hard.

I wish you luck in your efforts and please don't get too upset with yourself, it takes time and it's extra hard considering the stress you are under with the LC.

Kathy

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