Saturday, August 18, 2012

An Open Letter To My Parents

I try not to talk to my Mom and Dad too much about smoking because discussing it makes it worse.  But for awhile now there have been some things I wanted to say to them and and just couldn't speak about them.  So I thought maybe I would get some of my frustration out by "telling" them on here. 

To Mom and Dad,

First of all, I love you.  I love you so much that I am terrified when I think of the time you are longer going to be around.  You and TJ are my world, without you, I don't know what my life would be like.   And I don't want to find out anytime soon.  What does this have to do with smoking?  Your smoking is causing you to leave me before you should.  Mom, you are on oxygen at night and sometimes I am pretty sure you should be on it during the day.  You struggle to breathe just because you took a shower!  You promised me when I was a little girl that you would NEVER keep smoking long enough to end up oxygen.  You are late on that by several years.  I know you were born with and developed worse lung problems growing up so you will not get rid of all of the problems by quitting.  But you can't tell me that it is HELPING these for you smoke!   You talk often about alcoholics and drug addicts being selfish.  What you don't see is what you are doing is selfish to yourself as well as to your family.  Your choosing to continue and waffling about a quit date is taking you away from me more and more each day.   Its taking you away from your husband and grandson as well.  And as for Dad?  He has a message too, its coming.  I am not picking on either of you.

Dad, you have just as many excuses to keep smoking as Mom does.  Yay, you don't have COPD or emphysema.  That is wonderful but its besides the point.  Just because you don't have it NOW doesn't mean you won't get it in the future.   You also say Mom smokes more than you do.  Guess what?  You are right about that.  And what do you tell me about alcoholics all the time?  "So and so is a much worse drinker than I am!"   So what if she smokes more, its okay for you to keep it up because you don't use as much nicotine?   As much POISON?   That is one of your more ridiculous excuses.   I know its ten times harder to quit when someone else is still doing it but its not impossible.  No, I have never smoked and never will.  But there are people out there that have been smoking longer than both of you and they managed to quit.   How did they do it?  Well, first of all, they quit making excuses.

I want both of you around for a long, long time to come.  I know Mom keeps telling me that she is going to be around so long she will be a problem to her great grandchildren but those are just words.  If you don't stop what you are doing, that is not going to happen.  Dad, your health has started a bit of a decline as well, think of how much ground you will gain by not smoking anymore.  And how about TJ and I?   I have been breathing smoke since I was about 9 years old and it hasn't affected me so far but I have been lucky.  How would you feel if one of these doctor appointments I came home and told you I had developed lung issues?  Please, both of you, not for my sake, not for TJ's sake, but for YOUR sake, stop smoking.  I don't say try because trying doesn't work.  This time, it has to.


  1. I am a not very often commentor on MWOP, but I've always thought you seemed like one of the nicest people there.

    I thank you for this letter; I needed to read it, because I need to quit smoking. It is the hardest thing in the world, but I want to be around for awhile. Thank you, Shellie.

  2. Shellie, I could really identify with this. I have been trying to get my mom to quit smoking for what seems like forever. It's so frustrating. I hope that your mom and dad listen and quit.

  3. Shellie,it must be so stressful for you to feel the way you do(rightfully so),about your parents ruining their health and possibly shortening their lives and then having to be the one to go purchase the cigarettes. Is there anyway you can remove yourself from that task? Just to protect yourself some? I know your parents read here and I would like to say I am not trying to be extra harsh on them. I understand their situation,I really do but I don't think it is fair to you to have to be the one to bring the cigarettes into the home. This is just my unasked for opinion. You have a wonderful family and from all you have written everyone loves and supports one another. Your comment on the other blog about sometimes getting carded when buying your mom's cigarettes jumped out at me.