~~Addiction is a relationship....a pathological relationship in which....obsession replaces people.~~ Patrick Carnes
You may read here that understanding addiction is vital to a quit. But reading words on a screen or in a book or on a page doesn't always have the impact that experience has. And, being an addict, you have the experience to write the book.
Don't think so? Maybe you never have panicked realizing that you don't have enough cigarettes to get you through the week-end? Or wondered how long the meeting was going to last before you could have a smoke break? Or scrounged for change to buy a pack until you get paid tomorrow? Or bummed a cigarette because you were out? Or felt stressed or frustrated and just needed that moment alone to smoke and cool down?
Maybe you never left your family at the dinner table while you stepped outside for that after dinner cigarette? Maybe you never burnt the seat in your car or accidently brushed up against someone and burned the back of their hand or had to bend over while driving because you dropped a cigarette? Maybe you never "had" to smoke or maybe you never thought about a cigarette when it was impossible to sneak away? Maybe you never smelled that awful cigarette smell on your breath or on your clothes? Maybe you never felt the least bit guilty for smoking as your family begged you to stop? Maybe you never had to run in to buy another lighter? Maybe you never used the stove burner to light up? Maybe you never felt shame for ruining your quit?
Smokers who can't quit...who won't quit because they don't think that they can or they "need to"....are addicts. Addiction is a bunch of wicked, horrible, twisted lies that the brain comes up with in order to keep the addiction alive. There is no relief in smoking again except that addiction springs back to life. And the addict in you doesn't care about your family or your health or your finances. It only wants nicotine, period.
The good news about recognizing that you are an addict is that recovery can happen. If you are willing. If you work at it. If you understand it. If you are knowledgeable. You don't have to be the strongest or the most courageous or the wisest. You have to simply let go of smoking and turn towards freedom. Surrender to your fears, accept that you will want to smoke, and give yourself the gift of time to heal. Support to get through. And humor and grace and self care because you deserve them.
So really, read up about addiction and then apply it to your own life. It may be a bitter pill to swallow but it is opening a door to recovery at the same time. And you will never again be able to say "I feel like I'm losing my best friend". Because when you quit smoking, you are losing nothing. Absolutely nothing.
I wish for you everything I found for myself....beauty in a quit that has given me everything.