Many of the posts that we make on the forums or here on the blog are pointed to the new quitters out there. This is primarily due to the fact that’s its just so damn difficult to get a good quit started that the majority of help is geared toward the newbie quitter. With that being said, we’re not in this just to get someone to the Hall of Fame (considered 100 days of quit for those not in the know). We’re after a LIFETIME of quit. Forum moderator rkymtnman dropped this gem the other day during a discussion about going back to the can after a long quit.
Had a LONG talk with my wife about addiction last night. She and I have a large difference of opinion on the subject – she works in pain management as a Physician Assistant and essentially works with a very long line of addicts every day so I suppose she may know what she is talking about. This sort of thing – caving after 1,000 – only supports her argument that unless we change everything to the core – no fake dip, no new coffee habit, no new habit of stimulants of any kind (Monster, Red Bull, foofy Starbuck’s coffee drinks), etc – you are like 95% more likely to go back to your original habit – regardless of the support structure you have around you. That last part is what gets me fired up b/c I feel that with constant, daily accountability, you can’t lose provided you value your word.
The whole thing came up when she looked at a tin of SMC that was on the counter and it contains guarana and ginsing – among other things – 2 of the main “active” ingredients in Monster and other energy drinks. These are stimulants and in her opinion – are simply a replacement to your old habits. Research in recent medical journals support her argument that if you replace Skoal with SMC, you are 95% more likely to go back to Skoal regardless of other factors – such as a support system.
I don’t know where this is going but I was really pissed off yesterday after this discussion and wanted to rant about it to some extent. Usually when this is the case, she is generally right and I just don’t want to admit it. I stopped using seeds back in the fall and over the next 2 months developed a 2-3 cup of coffee a day habit. These “cups” are 16 oz travel mugs mind you. I was patting myself on the back for the 500 days free and she was essentially telling me I had not beat anything yet as I had simply replaced my nice addiction with coffee and the occasional tin of fake – I may have used 10 tins of the shit over the past year.
Today began my 1 cup of coffee a day, no more fake (unless it is hunting season then it is what it is…..) and a concerted effort to break all stimulant, snacking, whatever-else-bullshit she serves up that I need to stop and we’ll see. Figure it can’t hurt
So while this may go against our (or at least my) stance of “do whatever it takes to keep the real shit out of your mouth” stance, I thought it was a great point and should be addressed. While the “do whatever it takes” stance is DEFINITELY the way to go early in a quit “eventually” you will need to deal with your addiction on another level. That means that anything you may have used to replace dip (coffee, alcohol, etc.) will also have to be dealt with. That being said “eventually” will mean different things to different people. For some, it will be within a year or so of quitting. For some it will be a decade later. I can tell you that I’m nearly 4 years quit and I’m just not starting to seriously deal with the weight gain that I had when I quit. And while I’m about the biggest proponent of fake dip you’ll ever seen I’m to the point in my quit where I can’t remember the last time I had a fakie. Am I saying I’ll never use the fake stuff again? Absolutely not… if I need it to save my quit, I’ll use it in a heartbeat.
And before you jump down my throat for changing my position, consider this. We make essentially this same argument every single day on the forums. Would it be OK for a quitter for substitute smokes or Snus for chew? Absolutely not. Would it be OK for an alcoholic who’s poison was beer to switch to Jack Daniels? Absolutely not. So why is it OK for a snuff user to switch to beer, or food, etc? Like I said… “eventually” I’ll deal with it all.
Today? Today I’m quit.