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Smoking when pg - Page 2

post #21 of 97
I smoked during my first pregnancy. I don't think there's really any excuse, but if you want me to try to offer an explaination, it probably had a lot to do with being very young and just not knowing how bad it was (of course I knew it wasn't GOOD, but I didn't bother to read about it and didn't realize just how bad it can be). My OB did tell me to try to cut down but not stress myself out, which I think is half doctor trying to be nice and for me, probably because I was on medications for depression that I couldn't take while pregnant and maybe he thought going off that and quitting would be too much? I really don't know. I went from smoking a pack a day to 5-10. I honestly didn't think much about it at the time. Everyone I knew who smoked smoked while pregnant and half the people in my family smoked, my "father" smoked around us all the time so I guess I was desensitized. When I got a little older and matured some (not saying all teen moms are immature, but I was) and cared more about health, and I realized what kind of danger I had put my daughter in, and I was (and still am) devastated and ashamed of what I did. Thankfully I had sense enough not to smoke in the house after she was born at least. I thank God all the time that my now 6 year old daughter doesn't appear to have been harmed by my stupidity.

I quit as soon as I found out with my second one, but I had actually quit for around 4 months beforehand and had just recently started smoking when I found out. This time, I had quit for about 2.5 years but had started smoking some at work. I quit as soon as I found out. I think it was easier this time because not only was I not smoking much (or regularly), plus I know now how horrible it is on developing babies.

I'm hoping I just don't start back up again. It's a nasty, stupid habit and I hate it.
post #22 of 97
Unless you have been there, you won't understand what it's like. It has nothing to do with loving your child or not caring about their health and well being. It is an addiction. I smoked for half of my first pregnancy. I still feel immense guilt about it.

I don't blame any of you for feeling so strongly about this subject but please don't place judgement on women who do this. I felt the same way about pregnant women who smoked until I got pregnant and had such a hard time quitting. Thankfully I finally did and with this pregnancy it isn't an issue.

They need support, not judgement. Now, when I see a pregnant woman that smokes, i feel pity, because I know exactly what she is going through. I felt like I was in my own private hell until I quit. :

Just try to be open minded.

Angela
post #23 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by angela1435 View Post
Unless you have been there, you won't understand what it's like. It has nothing to do with loving your child or not caring about their health and well being. It is an addiction. I smoked for half of my first pregnancy. I still feel immense guilt about it.
This is very true. I made a very bad decision but I absolutely loved my daughter, just as much as anyone else.
post #24 of 97
My cousin is smoking she is due in 4/08. I keep telling her to quit or at least cut back as much as possible. I also tell her the risks but she is 17 and she just doesn't get it. We have a history of lung problems in our family and it worries me she is putting her baby at risk. There are also people enabling her by buying them for her which is just as worrisome.

I just keep praying she will quit soon!!
post #25 of 97
I've never smoked, but my mother did. When she was trying and trying to get pregnant, they finally told her she needed to cut down the cigarettes to get (and stay) pregnant... she was apparently conceiving, but then having very early m/cs.

Then they told her not to gain "too much" weight (the standard rec back then was 15 pounds, but since she was a few pounds heavier than ideal to begin with, they told her 10) and to sit around the house with her feet up for the first five months. Oh, and don't smoke. Yeah, right. You can have two out of the three. She cut back on cigarettes (from 4-5 packs a day pre-pregnancy) and only gained 11 pounds.

I was 6 pounds, 3 oz. at birth, born six days after my due date. My heart rate was 90 when I was born. I was ok after a while; I also had jaundice (mom was Rh-, I'm Rh+).

My mom finally quit when I was 8, after 31 years of smoking (her sisters got her started when she was 7). It was the hardest thing I've ever seen anyone do. I always hated the cigarettes, so I was glad she did it, but it took regression hypnosis for her to even remember a time when she didn't smoke, or how she started.

Years later, after a long history of depression beginning in childhood, I finally found an antidepressant that worked for me: Wellbutrin. Funny thing is, it's *also* used as a stop-smoking aid, because it acts on dopamine in the brain in the same way as nicotine. Then shortly after this discovery, I read a study that found that adult female children of smoking moms who smoked during pregnancy and early childhood have higher rates of depression, anxiety, and have memory problems (I don't have the latter, it seems... I've always had a great memory, though it was better before I tried Prozac!). Apparently, if the brain forms with nicotine in it, then it doesn't develop the same way as if it didn't... and it never unlearns how to balance things properly.

Granted, there are a lot of other factors that contribute to my depression ;-) and I've been meds-free for almost three years now, with talk therapy. I'm also shorter than my mom, who is only 5"4', and her sisters are taller than she is. Even though I never had asthma, bronchitis, or any of that stuff, I do believe that my mom's smoking affected me PROFOUNDLY. And while yeah, stress hormones aren't particularly good for the developing baby, they do not affect growth and development in nearly as many ways as cigarettes do. Heck, even just switching to gum or patches would be better, for not getting all the other pollutants into the mom's system.

But yeah, quitting is a very hard thing. I'm glad so many of you found pregnancy to be the ultimate motivator.
post #26 of 97
My mom smoked all during her pregnancies with me and my little sister. She told me how she even lit up during labor as she was stressed and needed a nicotine fix. They let her right in the hospital room! My sister and I have never had any problems that we know of so far. No asthma, no allergies when we kids, no vision problems and we were healthy weights. The only thing I can think of is that we were both in the 7 lb range but I know we both were really late (about 3 weeks overdue) so it's likely we would have be somewhat underweight had we been born near our due dates.

I hate when doctors tell their patients that the "stress" of quiting would override the benefits. Ridiculous!

My mother went through open-heart surgery this past Feb. and the doc told her the same thing. Nevermind that it was the smoking for forty decades that got her into the mess in the first place. Smoking constricts your blood vessels making them easier to clog, it affects your breathing and oxygen intake and made her a risk to operate on b/c of clotting issues. She had a few cigs before she went into the operation but hasn't picked up one since. She knows now that too much is at stake. Often, people have to be faced with losing something to make difficult changes like this. All the hoopla in the world is not going to change their minds unless they have a true ephiphany within themselves.
post #27 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grace24 View Post
How hard is it to step outside and smoke there?
Yeah -- so that your neighbours can enjoy the smoke instead.

We just moved back to the area where I grew up, and I had forgotten how prevalent smoking is here. We're in townhouses, and there is another row facing us, fairly close. People sit out on their steps at all times of the day, smoking, and it stinks up our whole house when we have the windows open.

The people directly across from us have small children, both parents smoke, and my kids' bedroom is on that side of the house. It gets horrible in their room when the neighbours are out there smoking if we don't shut the window (which, in hot, humid weather is the last thing I want to do once the air outside is cooler than the air inside). I wonder if their kids are sleeping upstairs and getting even more smoke in their rooms than we are, since they're smoking right under their upstairs windows....
post #28 of 97
Ive known 4 people who smoked throughout their pregnancies and every single one had a baby with complications(low, low birthweight, breathing issues, etc). One even had a preemie who didnt make it. Of course it's possible the smoking didn't cause these issues, but why not give your baby the best odds possible.
post #29 of 97
Wow, reading the replies in this thread made me so sad. This is, by far, the most judgemental I've seen the Mamas on MDC. I quit smoking the day I found out I had a little peanut on the way, but I wouldn't go around calling someone who didn't chose my path selfish. One of the things that drew me to this site is the openmindedness...guess that only extends to certain topics.
post #30 of 97
I quit cold turkey the day I found out I was pregnant with dd. I was six weeks pregnant. I was really afraid of hurting her. I try not to be judgemental but I smoked for 10 years and I was a heavy smoker - like a pack a day ! My breakfast before I was pregnant was a coffee and a cigarette :Puke and I quit. I had headaches and was pretty cranky with dh for a few weeks but it was worth it. So I have a really hard time with people who say it's too hard to quit because it's really not just about you anymore. I'm sorry if I offend anyone it's just my opinion.
post #31 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishcupcake View Post
Wow, reading the replies in this thread made me so sad. This is, by far, the most judgemental I've seen the Mamas on MDC. I quit smoking the day I found out I had a little peanut on the way, but I wouldn't go around calling someone who didn't chose my path selfish. One of the things that drew me to this site is the openmindedness...guess that only extends to certain topics.
Although MDC is about being open-minded about non-traditional mothering lifestyles and choices, and generally I think we are, it is not about blind acceptance of choices that may be harmful to others, incuding their own kids.

I sometimes feel "judged" here, maybe because I do choose to selectively vax, let my kids watch a little tv, or sometimes get drive-thru... Whatever it is. But I'll tell you what, I appreciate it. I don't want blind acceptance. It doesn't mean I think everyone else is right, instead it causes me to re-examine my positions and see if they hold up. I want to be a better and better mom (and human) every day. Sometimes that requires a little challenge.

Blind acceptance is what has gotten our society into big trouble many, many times.

And to you moms that smoked and weened off cigs slowly while pregnant: that's a very valid choice. I believe you did a hard and brave thing. You may be feeling guilty, but ultimately you made a really valid choice as to what way to quit would be best for your family. Try not to feel too guilty!

Joanna
post #32 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by gretelmom View Post
Although MDC is about being open-minded about non-traditional mothering lifestyles and choices, and generally I think we are, it is not about blind acceptance of choices that may be harmful to others, incuding their own kids.

I sometimes feel "judged" here, maybe because I do choose to selectively vax, let my kids watch a little tv, or sometimes get drive-thru... Whatever it is. But I'll tell you what, I appreciate it. I don't want blind acceptance. It doesn't mean I think everyone else is right, instead it causes me to re-examine my positions and see if they hold up. I want to be a better and better mom (and human) every day. Sometimes that requires a little challenge.

Blind acceptance is what has gotten our society into big trouble many, many times.

And to you moms that smoked and weened off cigs slowly while pregnant: that's a very valid choice. I believe you did a hard and brave thing. You may be feeling guilty, but ultimately you made a really valid choice as to what way to quit would be best for your family. Try not to feel too guilty!

Joanna

All I was saying was that while a difference of opinion is obviously welcome by most...judgement is uncalled for IMHO. Attaching hurtful words like "selfish" isn't helping anyone.
post #33 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishcupcake View Post
Wow, reading the replies in this thread made me so sad. This is, by far, the most judgemental I've seen the Mamas on MDC. I quit smoking the day I found out I had a little peanut on the way, but I wouldn't go around calling someone who didn't chose my path selfish. One of the things that drew me to this site is the openmindedness...guess that only extends to certain topics.
Really??? I was just thinking that I was impressed this thread has stayed so friendly.
post #34 of 97
Personally, my husband and I quit smoking BEFORE we even started trying to get pregnant. Even still, I had a cigarette socially on occasion (think 3 or 4 times a year). My last cigarette was a week before I found out I was pregnant with my son. That was 4 years ago. I haven't wanted one since. I have a good friend who got the positive pregnancy test, smoked one last cigarette, and then quit for the rest of the pregnancy. But she was back to smoking within just a couple or three months after her son's birth (I think it's important to note that her husband never quit through the pregnancy. I think that makes a difference in whether women go back to smoking after having the baby). Her son's a sweetie, but he's been plagued by respiratory problems his whole life. When he was an infant, it often sounded like he was just gasping for air.
post #35 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by OldFashionedGirl View Post
Since I'm of the "occassional drink is fine" camp, I'd suppose I could be of the "occassional smoke" came, as well.
My best friend (who's due to give birth next month!) came to visit me over the summer for my bachelorette party and wedding shower. She dubbed it her "vacation," and proceeded to go wild... she had a drink on Friday and another on Saturday, and smoked a cigarette each day.

I don't smoke, though, so she had to buy a whole pack to have her two cigarettes, so she had to give the rest of her pack away because she knew if she took them back with her, they'd be a temptation.
post #36 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by StrongBeliever View Post
Then again, smoking is right on par with many other "addictions" women don't give up when pregnant... We all know there are things we shouldn't be putting in our bodies, be it nicotine, excess caffeine, artificial sweeteners, soda, processed food, trans fat, chemical junk... But we still cram down that Twinkie or toss back the Diet Coke. Not trying to be righteous, I've shoveled down my share of crap-laden ice cream... I just think it's a sad place to be, and that people need to accept and admit it when they are doing something wrong and at least make an effort to change. Less Twinkies, one Coke a week, one cigarette a day... Whatever. But don't sit there complacently chain smoking/horking junk food/guzzling phosphates making excuses for your shitty addiction when it screws with the lives of those around you. Okay... Rant done.
I just want to put some perspective here. I am not saying smoking or anything esle unhealthy is ok, but lets look at the realm of addictions. I have an adopted daughter who was born addicted to methadone. I am not blaming her birth mother. She did everything she could to get clean once she realized she was pregnant. But please think about that. Equating cigarettes, junk food and drugs? I do feel that this whole conversation trivializes my daugher's situation and the problems that she will face in the future.

Just food for thought.
post #37 of 97
i quit almost a year ago yay me!
i smoked all thru my pregnancy with my dd, though. I never felt really great about it, but I had an excrutiating time trying to stop during the pregnancy, so finally I just decided to ease up on myself and keep smoking, just trying to smoke less. My doc concurred, too. My dd was born 2.5 weeks past her edd, healthy as she could be at 8lbs 15 oz. My own mother smoked thru all her pregnancies and we were all fine. Back in the olden days (like the 1950's ) women were encouraged to smoke while pregnant to keep their weight down! I think it's not good, but there are way worse things too. I don't judge, for sure.
post #38 of 97
Thread Starter 
I am always shocked to see a pg woman smoking. I do feel that it is really REALLY selfish to harm another body, that you have created and is growing inside of you. It was really easy from me to give up, and the smell of cigs now is so disgusting. This is 5 years on ,from the first time I got pg.
I am always really taken aback at their gaul also, to be doing that out in public, and not to worry that the Pregnancy Police are going to come and give them a huge lecture. But if their Dr. said it's ok, then I guess it must be eh?:
post #39 of 97
If you'd like to do a search in the Feb 08 ddc, you can find my posts about my struggles with quitting, and the guilt that I felt that I hadn't yet been able to. Fortunately, I was able to finally quit. I did smoke on and off for about a month 1/2, maybe a little more. I tried so hard to slow down and to quit and was finally successful. I haven't had a smoke since, and no desire for one either!

Luckily for me my ddc was very supportive with not even one hint of judgment. Only tremendous support! ( you mamas, thank you!) I posted there expecting flames, and got none. Just understanding.


My point? There are some mamas that smoke and don't care, I'm sure. But there are mamas who do care, and are trying so hard to quit. Really, we need support not judgment. We judge ourselves plenty already.

I also wanted to add.. just because you might have smoked and quit cold turkey with no problems when you found out you were pregnant means NOTHING. I smoked before my 4 yo was born, and I quit just like that when I found out we were expecting her. I went back to smoking later on.. and again, quit as soon as I was expecting. This time I expected quitting to be just as easy. I was shocked and surprised to realize that it took more effort. It took strength that I didn't have to give before. It took determination.

So please.. just because it was easy for you once.. don't think you're somehow stronger or more able to "withstand" and make the right choice for your baby. You have no idea what situation you might be in down the road.
post #40 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by angela1435 View Post
Unless you have been there, you won't understand what it's like. It has nothing to do with loving your child or not caring about their health and well being. It is an addiction.
Yes, it's an addiction...but how are so many women who find out they are pg able to quit cold turkey & so easily, too? Maybe because they care more about the health of their unborn child than their quick nicotine fix? There were plenty of times I craved a cigarette (and other major substances I abused before finding out I was pg) but you find the strength within yourself to steer clear of those things when you have another life to look after. I'm not passing judgement... just saying I know how it feels to have to give up drugs, drinking & smoking so my child has the best chance to have a healthy life.
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