Karen (55 years ) - Nationality African-American - 01 December 2002
"I started smoking when I was 26 years old during an abusive marriage. I suffered from chronic constipation. I discovered quite accidently that smoking cigarettes eased the constipation problem. I generally smoked one cigarette in order use the bathroom. It escalated from there to smoking when ever I was stressed or depressed. I however, never smoked in public or allowed any of my friends or co- workers to know that I smoked. Only very close family members knew that I smoked. I never smoked around my children or anyone else. My greatest hurdle in ceasing smoking is not having anyone to talk to about, if I told any of my co-workers that I smoked, they would not believe it or say the amount of cigarettes I smoke is inconsequential. I usually smoke about five cigarettes a day. When I am unusally stressed or depressed I have smoked as many as ten cigarettes. I wish I had never picked up a cigarette. I urge anyone contemplating picking up a cigarette to rethink it and resist the urge. It is a nasty, disgusting habit and very difficult to break - even when you want to. "
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