General chatter - silly parents...

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03-09-2006, 06:17 PM
OK. I need a little advice. I am 27 years old, and I haven't lived at home for many years. But on a recent trip home, I discovered that my parents (both 50) have recently begun smoking. Now, my dad smoked for about 20 years earlier, but then he quit. My mom, as far as I know anyway, has never smoked before. I asked why she was doing it and she said that it helps her not to eat so much.

Both of my parents could stand to lose a little, yes. My mom is diabetic, and there is a family history of heart disease and stroke. But it seems like they're really shooting themselved in the foot here.:nono:

I'm quite disappointed with them, honestly, because they raised me to take care of myself and to make good decisions. Now it just seems like they're being cavalier with their health, at a time in their lives when they should be doing everything they can to maintain their health. I realize that they're adults and I can't actually do anything about it, that they'll make up their minds and do whatever they want anyway. But I want to say something to them to make them wake up and stop being so silly. :rollpin: :coach:

Any ideas?

03-09-2006, 07:33 PM
Heart disease and stroke risk go UP with smoking. Tell them that. Using something that increases your risk of the two diseases you're trying to avoid through weight loss...that makes NO sense.

03-09-2006, 08:10 PM
That is so silly! But it reminds me of a cousin (a nutritionist to boot!) that when I started gaining weight told me to take up smoking. :?:

Of course I didn't because I was raised Seventh Day Adventist and they are very much against smoking. As a child I was shown cancerous lungs and gangrened legs in glass jars--all results of smoking.

Maybe you can gather info including photos from the web and show your parents. And if they are anything like me (56!) they will listen because the opinion that I hold in highest regard is my sons".

Tell your parents that they could take up exercising if they don't already.

Good luck.

Only Me
03-09-2006, 09:06 PM
Oh my. Diabetes and smoking are really bad combination. Circulatory problems, slower injury healing times, increased risk of amutation of feet/toes. Not to mention the increased risk of heart disease and stroke. Does their dr. know they've taken up smoking? Can you find some information about the risks of smoking with diabetes especially to give to them?

03-09-2006, 11:03 PM
I found some info from the American Diabetes Association, and I printed it out... I have written my parents a strongly worded letter about all this, too, and I thought when I sent it, I'd send some info like that, too. It's really strange... It's like my parents are in the midst of a mid-life crisis or something... but it's like they're going through it because they think they're supposed to go through a mid-life crisis... it's so ridiculous. seriously, i'm so upset with them.

03-10-2006, 12:32 AM
With Diabetes and Heart disease plus smoking she is also increasing her odds of dementia....without a doubt.

03-10-2006, 01:32 AM
Absolutely rediculous. I hope you get through to them!

03-10-2006, 02:47 AM
Parents! My mum and dad don't smoke anymore, but they are both alcoholics. It drives me mad. They're intelligent people, they warned the two of us kids about the dangers of drinking to excess. My mother went on a course and quit drinking, but now she is doing it again.

They probably know a lot of the health stuff.

Try telling them how it makes YOU feel, how their behaviour affects you, and how disappointed you are in them. I think parents sometimes forget how much we love them, and want them around, however much they drive us crazy.

03-10-2006, 09:42 AM
It depends on how you want to deal with it. My parents were doing something unhealthy and I finally set down and started talking wills, burial arrangements, prime directives and end of life issues- stuff like that. I just told them, "fine, if you want to kill yourselves then let's get the details taken care of so the rest of us will be prepared."

Honestly they are adults and probably aren't going to listen to you, their child. Unfortunately...but they may listen to a grandchld. Do they have any small grandchildren, neices or nephews? There's nothing quite so illuminating as the truth spoken from a small child.


03-10-2006, 02:52 PM
Being a cancer survivor, twice, and having NO reason behind why I did I would have to say BE BLUNT!!! just tell them, not only are they putting themselves at risk for heart disease and stroke but they are playing "russian roulette" with cancer and their lives. I would also tell them how dissapointed you are in them and why.

With all the known facts about smoking, there is no time to "sugar coat" this issue. Be up front!

03-10-2006, 03:45 PM
Yes, I think you're all right. I have written them a letter, and I will send it with some info soon. and I agree that they probably won't listen to me. they are about to inherit their first grandchild (my brother is getting married to a girl with a 2 year old in July), so maybe that will help them grow up a little. In the letter, i mentioned that I wished they'd be reasonable because I want them both to be around to play with my kids, too...

I want to get through to them, I just don't know how, i guess. I like the idea of talking about wills and cemetery plots, etc. Maybe that would shake something loose?

thanks for all the advice. it makes me feel better to know that I'm not being silly about this whole thing... :)

03-14-2006, 11:26 AM
I hate to surprise you with this but they know it's bad for them. Skip the health rhetoric and tell them you want to meet with a lawyer to draw up a will, etc., like Sarah suggested.

My parents both smoke and are now taking care of my chain-smoking grandmother. I informed them both that I will not be taking care of them and started talking about assisted living and nursing home arrangements. I haven't blamed my decision on the smoking. I have said that their caregiver will need specialized skills to deal with their inevitable illnesses and that they will be better served in a professional facility.

They still smoke but I have distanced myself from having to deal with the repercussions. I treid the health tack and they just got mad at me. I love them dearly and will miss them but their decisions are not my problem.

03-14-2006, 12:11 PM
I decided to delete my message after re-reading it. You'd have to know me to know how my daughter and I are and, not knowing me, that just sounded rude. So, disregard my suggestion to be rude to your mom and dad. Have fun! :)

03-14-2006, 01:40 PM
As a person who quit smoking cold turkey, I want to ask a few questions based on these suggestions:

If someone told you every time you ate that your extra weight made you look lazy, disgusting, greasy, etc., would that make you lose weight?

Would being charged extra "tax" on fattening foods make you quit eating them?

Would being charged extra on health insurance because of your weight make you lose weight?

Would being forced to eat outside regardless of the weather because watching you eat makes everyone nauseous make you lose weight?

Would having strangers interrupt you every time you're eating to advise you of the health risks associated with obesity make you lose weight?

Funny how people think these tactics will make smokers quit. Like going on a diet, the decision to quit smoking is a personal one and requires an extraordinary amount of will power to achieve. Belittling comments and "helpful" advice only hurt feelings and alienate people. Like dieters, many smokers struggle with stress, self confidence, and set backs. One of the common results of quitting smoking is weight gain. At least when you lose weight, you don't wake up one morning as a smoker.

03-14-2006, 08:39 PM
I tend to doubt that your parents got to 50 years old and DON'T know the risks and consequences. I don't think you're going to win any arguments by showing them gross pictures or telling them it's bad for them. BUT... I do think your best point is that you're disappointing in their choice..... that there are certainly healthier ways to lose weight that aren't going to hurt themselves and other....appeal to their reasonable side and their emotional connections, not threats or scare tactics--those never work. Share YOUR feelings "it scares ME what it might do to YOU"..."I don't want to be around it"..."I worry about you"..... just a few thoughts.