My parents started young, my friends started young, and I started young. Tobacco companies know this, so they use it to their full advantage. Plus, the younger you are, the more naive you are about life and the consequences. You're very vulnerable during those years.
I often see teens smoking and I want to tell them to quit, or face the dim consequences, but I've never had the courage to do so. Kids just think it's so cool, so they rebel. They have no idea what they are getting themselves into. They have no idea their future life might be completely destroyed by them.
I think it's interesting to note that, at the time, the most intelligent students, the best artists, the best actors, all were smokers.
It's about rebelling against your parents.
It's hard to be a teenager. There are so many different things going on.
Sadly, there is nothing we can really do about it. We just have to accept that it's just a part of growing up. At one time or another, you WILL be exposed to it. It's a rite of passage. How many people have you met in your life that have NEVER lit up once in their life? Maybe 2 or 3? It's definitely a small number.
My parents didn't really hide it from me because they were smokers themselves. They puffed away in front of me all the time. I guess at an early age I didn't really think anything of it. It was just something my parents did. They didn't go outside or anything, as they lit up in the house.
When you hit those teenage years, you begin to meet people who are a little bit older. And if they happen to be 18 years old, well then you've hit the jackpot. You can buy cigarettes whenever you want to. It's a fact and a lot of people do that.
I remember asking other people to buy some for me all the time. It was easy! Even buying alcohol was easy.
So like I say, it's nearly impossible to completely avoid cigarettes. At some point, you are going to have to face them and either go with the flow and get addicted, or say NO! It's as simple as that. No one starts out being addicted to nicotine. It's a gradual process. It takes years.
But, in reality, all it takes is going one way or the other at that certain young age. That decision can cost you years of health issues. It may even determine how early you die. The decision to become a user begins in your younger years. All we can really do is educate.
Learn more about the positive and negative effects of teenage peer pressure.
Learn more about the pressure to smoke for adults. It's not just teenagers that deal with it. People from all walks of life deal with these issues.
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