There are two main types of children who had smoker parents.
The type that everyone knows, the ones who start smoking themselves because… well personally I don’t know. I guess they like to follow what they see.
And then there is the other type, the ones who detest the very idea of smoking, cringe when they see a cigarette, feel sick when they are asked to touch a smoking related instrument.
Not because they are being immature or rebellious. But because they have seen the effects first hand, and experience them first hand. And they hate it.
Millions of children grow up in a household of smokers. Many of these children also grow up begging their parents to stop. Education teaches them about all of the problems and effects relating to smoking and passive smoking.
But parents rarely listen, not to adverts, not to warnings and, heartbreakingly, not to their own children.
This could cause some children to feel unloved. They might feel like their health is being ignored, they might wonder if their mother smoked whilst she was pregnant. They might wonder if their parents even care that they are exposing their child to the same disease causing toxins and chemicals, except the children have no choice.
Which leads me on to the main point. How much do these smoker parents care? And are the children right to hold it against them?
Now, I should add that I am in no way insinuating that smokers do not care about their children, not at all. I am merely stating that they care more about their supposed addiction (but that’s another story altogether) than their childrens health.
After all, these parents have no reason to be unaware of the harm they are causing. We see the adverts everywhere, the clear warnings stare up at them from their cigarette packet, their children beg them to stop and cough when their near.
So why don’t they just stop? Very good question. And one I genuinely have no real answer to. Nicotine, from what I’ve seen, is not as addictive as it is made out to be. Many people who have been in the Military, or indeed the Cadet force, will tell you that smokers quickly forget about their habit for weeks whilst training,as they are simply too busy. The only logical reason that I can find for still smoking is that raising a child is stressful, so you can imagine that a method of stress relief may be hard to give up. Even for your children.
Now, that brings us to the next point. Should children, and more often than not teenagers, feel resentful and angry about their parents habit? Yes. Simple as that. I feel that if any person is being exposed to harm by those who are supposed to care for them, then they have every right to feel scared and angry. Why scared? These children are bombarded with things in school and in the media about how many people die from smoking and passive smoking, why wouldn’t they be terrified. As if there isn’t enough for young people to worry about these days.
So, conclusion. Parents who smoke are, whether they want to admit it or not, failing in their role as a parents to some degree. At least in my opinion, and the opinion of many others who were the children of smokers. It is a horrible thing to put your children through, especially if they are begging you to stop.
If you are the child of a smoker, just know that you are completely within your right to be annoyed, but this doesn’t mean that they don’t love you just that… they find it hard to hold that thought in mind whilst lighting a cigarette near you. That’s all. And good luck to you, and never give up.