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My loved one smokes or vapes, but I wish they didn't

It's tough to watch your loved one smoke or vape. And it's understandable that you want them to quit. Here are a few things to consider before you talk to them about it.

Sometimes a gentle approach is best.

They need to be ready to quit

Making the decision to quit – and then actually quitting – is a really big deal. It’s completely normal to want your friend, partner or relative to stop smoking or vaping, but they need to be ready and motivated to do it for their own reasons.

Have a conversation

Try talking to them calmly about the reasons why you want them to quit, whether it’s for family or their health or financial reasons. Keep in mind that cigarettes and vapes are highly addictive and quitting can be a difficult process. 

Don’t get involved in an argument

Most people who smoke already know that smoking is bad for their health, expensive and is becoming less socially acceptable. Disagreements often make people more defensive and more likely to insist on their right to smoke.

Getting into arguments about vaping can lead to frustration as there is a lot of misinformation about them. Research is building about the harms of vaping, but if your loved one is not yet open to learning about them, then forcing the issue may make them defensive or dismissive. Letting them know the information is here if they want it, especially at a time they are having doubts about vaping, may be a gentler way to get them interested.

Don't be over-the-top

While you might be tempted to push your loved one to quit, remember less is more. They probably already feel guilty about smoking or vaping and understand the costs to their health.

Quitline can help

Quitline is a free, confidential counselling service for people wanting to quit smoking or vaping. Quitline counsellors are friendly and they have lots of experience. They've spoken to thousands of people, each at different stages of their quitting journey. It might be helpful to let your friend or loved one know that Quitline is really successful and that most callers are very satisfied with their Quitline experience. Quitline can also talk to you about how to support a friend or loved one. 

There are multiple ways to contact Quitline, including by phone on 13 7848, the online request a callback form, WhatsApp, and more:

Last updated February 2024

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