My Dad developed lung cancer and then my mom was diagnosed with COPD shortly thereafter. They were lifelong smokers.
As a NON smoker I couldn’t understand WHY they kept up with such a health altering habit so I decided to ask several smoker friends and family members why they cannot quit and here is what I found: They don’t want to stop smoking. If smoking did not cause disease these people say they would continue the habit because they like it. Even my own husband who was a “2 pack cigarettes a day” kind of guy told me he enjoys smoking. So here is the obvious conclusion; smoking is not just a nicotine addiction, it is also about the behavioral patterns associated with the actual cigarette. Sadly, my parents suffered almost 7 years. It still hurts to think about the difficulties they both went through from their smoking related diseases. They couldn’t even attend our wedding due to their poor health. Dad was able to quit on his own but Mom continued. She passed away from COPD in 2006 while on a respirator that she would have never been able to live without. I still feel hurt and even a bit angry that my siblings and I had to make this tough decision. This was exactly one week after Dads passing of lung cancer complications. I sad goodbye to both of them at the funeral service. It was the saddest day of my life.