I come from a little place called Romania, and I am happy to have been born in this country out of all the other choices I had. Why is that? Although it is not the only reason, at least not one that is top of mind, it remains a viable one: free smoking. Unlike other countries, here I am allowed to enjoy my guilty passion in public places. As a nonsmoker you might consider this an issue, but as a smoker I do see myself free of charge.

I am a smoker and I chose so, for various reasons of my own. But that is not the topic. The purpose of this blog post relates mainly to the nonsmokers, who prefer to express their feelings against cigarettes with a sense of criticism and a touch of advice.

I do not know how it happens, but when I go out with my friends or acquaintances, I suddenly become part of one or the other group: all smoker or all nonsmokers, with me in between. And if you’ve ever found yourself in a moment like this, where the only person at the table holding a hand in the air like she’s ready for the check, is you, than you probably know what I mean.

Smoking by Veronica Panita

The problem arises barely when everyone is searching for topics to cover around the table. If you happen to be the only smoker in a group of healthy declared people, you nailed it. All the attention is drawn to you, because everyone cares.

Do you know how harmful those cigarettes can be to your health? But, do you know what those french fries can do to your body cells? Do you realize that you are literally burning your money? Do you understand how nasty it looks on a girl to smoke like that? Have you thought about… quitting? Why did you decide to smoke?

Bingo! Anything else before or after this question alone is no one else’s area of concern. The comments stop or should at least stop at the decision part. I am an adult, responsible decision maker and I would like to decide what’s best for me. Of course, I am aware that cigaretttes can be pretty harmful, as every tobacco producer ethically highlights this.

But, in spite of that, I chose this lifestyle. I know it is your duty as a friend to inform me of all the things that could go wrong, but please let aside the criticism. It is the sole pleasure I get to enjoy whenever I want.

Your lifestyle is your choice, and that is rarely influenced by outer factors, as long as you take action consciously. I do admit no one has come and told me to take up cigarettes, but everyone has told me how harmful they can be, even before the action itself. Now think again. Isn’t that reverse psychology?