Prevent Children Smoking
It is the parents' responsibility to prevent children smoking.
You CAN guide your kids to steer clear of the tobacco habit, and
other unwelcome habits such as drugs, alcohol, and so on.
This website has lots of advice and free help on nicotine and quitting smoking.
All the dangers are listed, from smoking and pregnancy to statistics and facts. There are also several brilliant resources for smokers to purchase to change their life.
This page is one of the most important of all. It focuses entirely on how to prevent children smoking so that parents are equipped with the confidence to control and guide their offspring.
Kids mess up your moods!
Children bring you the highest highs and the lowest lows in your life. As a Mother once said, "You are only as happy as your unhappiest child."
START RIGHT NOW. Whether you child swears, is inconsiderate, smokes, drinks etc... if your child is causing you concern and you feel in your heart it's not right... start now and exercise your right and privilege as the parent. Don't cop out.
You're in charge
It's called tough love — love is tough, you have to be cruel to be kind, is another way of putting it. If you care, you will be tough; your child will love you for it and you will love yourself.
To prevent children smoking and other seriously dangerous activities means you as an adult must guide and educate them.
Because you know best, you make the rules. Because you're the boss, you're in charge of their welfare and you care enough to set limits for them until they are old enough to weigh up the pros and cons themselves.
The best leaders earn grudging respect
NEVER underestimate the value of interaction with your child or children. You may be mighty unpopular, but parents don't need to buy the love of their kids (they love you deeply, unconditionally underneath, don't worry). You will glow with pride when you listen to your child later as they recount with respect how you reared them.
To prevent children smoking is your right; it's not coddling them. Kids can push the boundaries, express their individuality and fire up their imagination in other ways.
Praise them, tell them you love them, tell them that they can't do something or other BECAUSE you love them and it is not safe.
Involve them with challenges; ask their opinions; give constructive advice — always with the thought of building their self-esteem.
If they stumble, mumble, bumble and generally can't do anything right, ask them why something is hard for them to get right and don't judge them by their answer, but help them work out a solution, or show them patiently how to.
Find something they can do right and praise them for that.
Tell them they are the most important thing in your life... and you have the afternoon or 30 minutes to spare... so what can you help them with? Or let's go for a wander… or show me how your project is going... or play a game... or what makes you like Danny and Chris as friends? Even if they give you a withering look, you have made the effort. Keep at it — they're testing as they grow.
Make them feel good about themselves and worthy of yours and the world's attention.
Depending on their age, you can ban them from smoking and/or spend the time talking over the dangers of nicotine and how preventing children smoking now can save them from a lifetime of addiction later. If they won't listen, restrict favors until they do.
Even if it appears that they consider you the lowest, meanest, oldest, ugliest slime on earth (whatever language is in favor), keep at it.
Put articles in front of them, on their pillow, tell them the statistics, tell them you care, tell them their Gran cares, their future kids will care.
Tell them about the wrinkles, the pain and green phlegm that gets coughed up day after day in possibly only 20 years from now if they smoke.
Peer pressure — let your kids go with the crazy fads...
... but do your darndest to encourage children's self-respect so they can thumb their noses at the harmful ones.
Many parents try hard, and most parents still feel guilty that they could do better. Whatever parent you are, don't blame it on yourself if your child smokes or has other unwelcome behavior. Keep reinforcing how precious they are, with the idea that they value themselves too much to be swayed by peer pressure to do harmful things to themselves.
Children smoking are kids who haven't yet grasped how to value their life above what peers think. Or they may be depressed or bored.
Happy kids are involved kids
To prevent trouble sneaking in, has your child got enough interests? Bored children get into mischief. Involvement with sport or hobbies is great.
Even if you hate sailing for example, but there's a great little yacht club down at the bay, it may be that they are looking for extra crew — find out. Or is there a local matial arts or cross-country running club.
If children can become interested in an activity, they soon realize that to participate well in most cases, requires fitness and some training, not energy sapping activities like smoking, drinking and scoffing junk food.
Has your child mentally opted out of some school subjects because of difficulty understanding?
Kids can so easily lose interest in school and take up bad habits if they can't keep up or have pressure on them. Maybe they need tutoring or a serious homework timetable, or someone to oversee and help with the basics to give them confidence and get back on track.
Child smoking already?
If smoking has got a hold on your child, or they are still determined to try it, here's a good little trick to prevent children smoking — it's called aversion therapy.
It's been practiced for years and works on people and, yes... even dogs. (If a pup can't help itself and decides to get into a neighbor's chicken coup, the cure is to tie one of the dead chickens around its neck for a few days — phew! The smell is overwhelming for the owner, but the pup will never ever look at chickens again!)
Here's what you can do to prevent children smoking further:
Let's say you've caught your son smoking. Tell him if he really feels he is adult enough to smoke, then ok he must smoke like a real adult, a real man, a real cool film star. Big, deep puffs, lots of lazy smoke drifting around his face, eyes squinting, cheeks pulled in, real pro stuff please.
Show him how to smoke like a real adult, take him into the smallest room of the house, usually the bathroom; shut the door and lean against it; have plenty of cigarettes; make him light one and take long deep puffs right to the end.
Light another and tell him he's not getting any dinner/pocket money/holiday to Aunt Kaz/birthday outing/etc, until he can smoke like a grown-up and finish the whole packet in this room — now.
Push him to inhale, see how much smoke he can make — in short, see if you can make him sick! If you can, there's a strong chance he won't smoke again. If you catch him at it another time, repeat the performance.
It's not pleasant, but it's usually an extremely effective way to prevent children smoking once and for all. (Please use your judgment regarding the health of your child and please don't consider physical violence — this is purely a lesson in proving nature's way of showing what's harmful now in a powerful way, rather than showing up as lethal symptoms later.)
As Confucius said: "Tell me and I will forget. Show me and I may remember. Involve me and I will understand."
Oh, and by the way, it's a no-brainer that the best way to prevent children smoking is for parents to be a good role model.
If you're a smoking parent, you couldn't do a better thing for yourself and your loved ones by quitting. What better motive to quit than love?
Quit for Good Stop Smoking Program
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