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No! Do NOT post an SOS!


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You know, during the 9 months that I have been associated with quit smoking forums I have seen many quits saved because someone posted an SOS. I have also seen many quits lost because the person did NOT post an SOS. Believe me, there is nothing more frustrating for your quit buddies than someone with a good, solid quit going who posts, "Oops! I smoked last night! Now I'm finishing up the pack but I feel terrible about myself." Why tell us about your relapse after the fact? Why didn't you SOS before you lit that first cigarette??!!

 

And that is the point of my thread title-- why do people NOT post an SOS when they could/should? It might help us to know the train of thought here so that we can guard against it.

 

For myself, there have been a couple of times (maybe 2 or 3) when I was really, really close to relapsing. Thank heavens there were no cigarettes in the house so I didn't smoke. On those occasions I thought about posting an SOS but I didn't. Why?  

 

1. I didn't want anybody to talk me out of smoking! Yep. That's the #1 reason I didn't post an SOS. Nicodemon had taken over my brain and told me that I didn't want those namby-pamby QT people spouting their trite anti-smoking slogans at me. Or telling me that I didn't want to smoke. B***S****! I most certainly DO want to smoke and I want you all to leave me alone so I can go buy some cigarettes. 

2. I've gotten this many months into my quit and the QT folks think that I'm "strong and safe" in my quit. It will be too embarrassing to tell them that I am struggling. My reputation will be ruined and the newbies will be scared to see that people can struggle months after their quit. I'd better just keep my mouth shut and deal with this by myself. 

3. If I DO relapse, I don't want to be harassed about it. Right now, I am on the cusp of smoking again. I might or might not do it. But if I post an SOS everybody will know that I am struggling. Then if I do relapse, they will all be "at" me with their "get back on the horse right now" advice or expressions of sympathy and/or disappointment. That will make me feel really badly about myself. So I'll just keep my current struggle to myself and hope for the best. 

 

Fortunately for me, I never did relapse. I've come awfully close and I probably will again some day. But so far just posting a regular message and getting some support and advice has worked for me. However, I have not (yet) been in the position of being inebriated when I was hit with a crave-- alcohol increases the probability of relapsing many fold. 

 

So how about you? Have you thought about posting an SOS but didn't? Have you been in a place where you know that you probably should have posted an SOS but you didn't? Why not? What was your thinking that prevented you from typing those 3 little letters? What advice can you give others so that they might not be so reluctant? 

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Excellent post!

 

It has really made me think. I've never posted the words SOS, but I have posted some kind of help me pre-SOS type messages, and the replies I got were always enough to keep me from progressing to a full-blown SOS. Or I have spoken to a few people in PM who have helped me.

 

But if I did get to the stage of needing an SOS, I would like to think that I would post it, because I know how frustrated I get when others don't... I know there aren't really many rules around here, but one rule for me is to ALWAYS believe in SOS (posting or replying to them)

 

I would be interested to hear from people who didn't SOS and did relapse...

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I have come on this board and admitted to smoking thoughts and visions of cigs at 13 months quit.  It was not an sos as I did not let it get to this point. I know that this train and the other place helped me so much because I felt that I would be letting people down if I smoked. ,  I did not want to disappear and have people feel bad. ...T

 

The idea of an sos is good because most of the time of course you are feeling a short term, overwhelming crave. People talk to you; you remember why you wanted to quit, and the craves die down. I am not the type to ask for any help in the real world. I have come to see that as a weakness that I need to work on. One should never feel to proud to post an sos even after years of quit 

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I Have never posted a s.o.s.....but.....

I have reached to members on the discussion thread....

I was told by a member very early in my quit.....

It's ok to have a wobble...as long as you don't fall over.....

These words have stayed with me always......

when you are faced with something as bad as amputation....it makes you think very hard whether to go back to smoking...

I decided my feet were more important to me.....

that and letting the folks down who have supported me every step of the way....to make sure I succeeded.....

But I understand every one is different...and deal with thier quits different.....

Staying quit is the most important thing.....

And all roads lead to Rome......

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I have posted an SOS, I did it once and I really was hunting for a cig to smoke at the time. My quit was just under 2 months old and I was heavy on the vino and knew I was at risk.

 

After that there was a time I was close to posting an SOS and truth to tell, I realy could have used the support. However, I felt I shouldn't as I had already posted one once?? It's fair to say I wasn't thinking straight - thankfully I was able to message someone that I saw online so I did it that way. I also spend a proportion of time venting on the swear thread lol.

 

The moral of this story is I ALWAYS think SOS is fine, lesson learnt here. Will a newbie really give up trying because I at 9 months am having a proper wobble - really doubtful I think. 

 

I literally cried at certain people losing their quits and never giving me or others the chance to support them. Think that's worth saying. It doesn't hurt anyone's quit to support another.

 

x

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I think that the only SOS that I have ever posted was on day 2 of my quit. I never posted another one because I have always felt in control of my quit even when the universe threw me a curveball. I will chime in when I see a person struggling with what I went through at that time of my quit and some of the time it surprises others that I was feeling that way. 

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I'm glad I didn't struggle on my own. I know I'm holding the record of posting sos but I rather post then loose my quit.

I'm very happy and touched by the wonderful support I received those times but especially TODAY. You people are awesome

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I did post an SOS, multiple times and I'm ashamed about how often I need you all; but today was a close call and I'm glad I DID post an SOS

Please don't be ashamed - post one whenever you feel like you need to. No such thing as posting 'too many' :)

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People find it hard to quit smoking.

 

All of the reasons posted above are valid reasons that people use not to post SOS...

 

Junkie, vanity, self conscious, etc etc...

 

SOS is a fantastic tool, and when used, it can save the person on the edge, it can reassure others who struggle and it can reaffirm for those that support it.

 

Part of the deal has always been that people commit to posting SOS before they smoke...

 

So let me start

 

I will never smoke a cigarette without posting SOS first.

 

Great thread Chrys.

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So I guess this is me.  I didn't SOS and I relapsed.  I did say at the time why I didn't SOS but I'll say it again as people are interested in the topic.  Doing an SOS at that point would have been a waste of everyone's time.  There was nothing anyone could have said to me that I didn't already know, and that would have stopped me in my tracks.  

 

I know people say they feel hurt that they weren't given the chance to offer support in those circumstances but I'm sure they would feel more hurt had they dropped everything and rushed to offer support only for me to disregard everything that was said and smoke anyway.  I simply didn't want to waste anyone's time when my mind was already made up.  That day, I wanted to smoke more than I wanted to quit.

 

Even now, I can't guarantee I would SOS - it would depend on the circumstances I guess.  For one thing, I don't have mobile internet service so if I'm away from home and a crisis hits I wouldn't be able to ask for help anyway.  

 

It does make me wonder why I'm here on the site if I won't take support at that crucial moment.  I've pondered on that one a lot.  I'm really not sure what my purpose is here.

Wendy. Relapse or not, will always be a choice.

 

SOS forces another conscious action pre relapse.

SOS makes one consider whether waiting one hour might make a difference

 

I think of it as adding another layer of protection and defence.

 

Besides, I can see through your computer screen and have a crew of Peaky Blinders on standby if I see you reach for a cigarette..

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I just posted an SOS the other day, just a few days after my quit but it was so helpful. I just hope that it's effective every time I come close because I anticipate more close calls.

 

I hear what Wendy is saying though. If I was truly, TRULY, hell bent on smoking a cigarette I don't know that I'd use the SOS board for all the reasons she listed.

 

The other day I WANTED to be talked out of it but I don't know that I'll always feel that way.

 

For now, at this moment, I'm fine. :)

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I can relate to #2 I didnt want the newbies to know I was having a wobble, nothing to do with pride or reputation I dont care about that crap it was more to be seen to be strong as an example to them but when it came down to the wire I realised I was here firstly for myself and secondly for others sorry but thats the truth

 

I have posted 2 SOS when it really was touch and go and I am glad I did as 

 

1 it saved my quit

2 it actually showed people SOS is OK however far down the track you are

 

for goodness sake if you are struggling and romancing post - no shame in it whatsoever thats what we are here for

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So I guess this is me.  I didn't SOS and I relapsed.  I did say at the time why I didn't SOS but I'll say it again as people are interested in the topic.  Doing an SOS at that point would have been a waste of everyone's time.  There was nothing anyone could have said to me that I didn't already know, and that would have stopped me in my tracks.  

 

I know people say they feel hurt that they weren't given the chance to offer support in those circumstances but I'm sure they would feel more hurt had they dropped everything and rushed to offer support only for me to disregard everything that was said and smoke anyway.  I simply didn't want to waste anyone's time when my mind was already made up.  That day, I wanted to smoke more than I wanted to quit.

 

Even now, I can't guarantee I would SOS - it would depend on the circumstances I guess.  For one thing, I don't have mobile internet service so if I'm away from home and a crisis hits I wouldn't be able to ask for help anyway.  

 

It does make me wonder why I'm here on the site if I won't take support at that crucial moment.  I've pondered on that one a lot.  I'm really not sure what my purpose is here.

All you ever need for membership here is the desire to quit smoking.   Belonging to a group provides the accountability some find helpful and education about addiction to get you and keep you smoke free.  I have never had my feelings hurt by someone who relapsed.  My heart goes out to them though because starting over never feels good and we've all been there.  My point is that you are not required to post an SOS and you will always be supported in your desire to quit smoking.  Always.    Plus you're monkey looks great in the Jib Jabs.  :)

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Minute by minute is fine. Day by day little better. That's all we can or should ask before sending up another prayer. This group is sometimes that prayers answer.

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I remember during the summer when I was camping for the week, I had quite a few thoughts of smoking, I was surrounded by dozens and dozens of smokers sitting at a log fire drinking, singing and most were smoking, every night was the same and every night I thought a smoke would be nice now, Internet connection was rubbish so I couldn't sos but I know I would have if I could, what I did each night was pictured myself having to come back and tell my quit train family that I'd failed and let them down, that killed me and each night got easier and when I'd wake in the morning I felt great, no hangover, hearing everyone coughing their guts up and in bits.

 

I've went off track but my point is I couldn't sos but still because of you lot here, without knowing it but I thought about what you'd all say if I did sos so I played it out in my head but if I wasn't here a part of the train I am pretty certain I would have smoked xxx

Ev never feel ashamed of posting an sos as many times as you need to, jesus that's what we are all here for and

Wendy likewise if you don't do sos' that's ok too, maybe try picture the future and what we would all say to help instead, just cos you maybe won't doesn't mean you haven't and aren't getting any help here,even if we just helped take your mind off a crave or celebrated your Anne's with you,that's a bonus x

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Actually Sue that did happen a while back.  I had a bad moment with my son and really wanted a smoke - I tried to come online to the QT to get help/support but my computer decided to have a hissy fit and not play ball - so I stopped, breathed, and told myself everything I knew the QT peeps would say to me and it worked.  SOS by proxy I guess, and I did post about it when I did get back online.  

 

I'm not against SOS by any means - I can see how it helps people and and I've replied to quite a few people myself when I've been around.  I think the QT does a tremendous job in helping people in SOS and I always think to myself, good job people, when someone's been talked down.  

 

So I'm not saying I would never SOS - I'm just saying it depends on the circumstances - there's no 'standard' crisis or 'crave'.

 

In the clinic surrounded by smokers I did the same

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hope im posting this in the right place.  never be embaressed to ask for help   posting an sos says help me im not strong at the moment but it doesnt mean your weak either we all need help sometimes  so dont be  scared to ask  your friends if not them then who   like this song says lean on me  for it wont be long before i need someone to lean on  https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=KEXQkrllGbA

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I posted an sos on day 2, and it worked.. around the 6 mo. mark I was struggling... going back to smoking was just nagging at me.. nag-nag-nag 24/7.. I didn't post an sos at the time because I didn't want to admit I was losing my grip on my quit, I wanted to get thru it an no one be the wiser..STUPID mistake!!!!!

 

it almost cost me my quit, our Action saw I was in trouble and reached out, before I knew it the QT family was rushing in to "get me off the ledge".. what I found out after talking and listening to "the family" is that I really wasn't wanting to smoke.. I was just have'n a good fashioned pity party mostly because the "newness" of my quit had worn off, the "love affair /  honeymoon" stage of being newly quit had worn off, and I didn't like it.. not one bit..

 

once I realized that, I could put on my big girl panties and get  to the business at hand, namely enjoying my new smoke free life, filling the  new found time on my hands..

 

the honeymoon was over because I had gotten past the hardest part... the admiralen rush was over.. ..I didn't understand that.. and the NOT understanding what I was really feeling nearly cost me a 6 month quit... I'll say it again.. STUPID!!  if I had reached out and posted an sos I could have saved myself a hell of a lot of misery!  

 

now I know if I feel a bit out of sorts to reach out.. the folks here on the QT have a wonderful way of getting to the bottom of whats going on when you can't see the forest for trees...

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Thanks, everyone! I found this thread very interesting and educational. 

 

The most important thing I learned from this is that feeling connected to the group seems to be very important to the process of quitting smoking. That surprises me because I am usually a "loner"-- I'm not very social, I never join groups, Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken" is my favorite poem, etc. That's why I was surprised to realize that when I was in danger of relapsing I kept thinking about how others in the group would react. I thought about their disappointment or their approbation. I worried about frightening or discouraging newbies. My usual thinking about others' reactions is, "Who cares what anyone else thinks?" so this experience was new for me.

 

I can see from reading your responses here that most of us considered the reaction of the group when we were contemplating smoking a cigarette. Some of us thought about our QT buddies and decided not to smoke, or we decided to post a regular message rather than an official SOS, or we decided that it was smart to reach out for some extra help and we did post an SOS. But regardless of what we actually did or did not do, most of us did include the QT folks' reactions in our thinking.

 

That tells me that IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO PARTICIPATE ACTIVELY IN THE FORUM. Not just lurk; not just log on once or twice and then go on about your merry way; not even just logon to play some games. Even if you are not a "joiner" you will find it very helpful if you get to know the other people here. Read their posts. Click "Like" frequently to provide positive feedback. Start a thread now and then and respond to others' posts from time to time. You don't have to spend hours here every day, but as you get to know the people here, just knowing them and caring about them and realizing that they do care about you will help you keep your quit. 

 

As Batman/Wiley said in another thread today: "Only speaking for myself, but joining this quit smoking site is the one thing that I did that is different from all my other quits. 11months later I'm still quit and will stay quit." Holy Leaping Lizards, Batman, you're absolutely right!! 
 

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Unfortunately I am one of those members who did not post an SOS when I should have, and relapsed, deep down I knew at the time that I did not want to be talked out of the relapse as I was romancing the cigarette far too much, I stupidly thought that one would do no harm, not realising how quickly the addiction could take hold again, that just shows us all how powerful the addiction to nicotine is, it makes us think we are invincible that we can stop at any time, that we do not need help from anyone, Posting after the relapse is like waking up the morning after a night of heavy boozing and wondering where the hell you are, putting your head in your hands and going WTF.  There are all different types of doubts, relapses and ways of us dealing with them.  The most important aspect is that we know we can come and we can reach out to other people and get the help we need.  Sometimes we are too ashamed to post an SOS as we feel that maybe so far down the line we should be able to deal with the cravings, but never feel ashamed to reach out, we all need help at times and a shoulder to rest on, sometimes we need to keep fighting.  We sometimes need to learn that there is no quick fix in quitting and it can sometimes take time.

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