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Marriage/Husband took up smoking recently


I'm 42 and from the UK. Over the past 3 weeks my husband's suddenly taken up smoking; he never used to smoke before now. He does it wherever we go, even in front of our children (aged 14 and 16). He's not a bad guy, but why he does it worries me. I asked him one night over dinner when the kids were doing homework/college work and he admitted it was to cope with stress in work, a colleague got some cigarettes to cope and it all spiralled from there. I know people can be stressed, but is taking up smoking normal as a response? I tried to educate him on the dangers, but probably goofed by showing him pictures of smokers' lungs online. It's put me off sex, as he's even smoking in bed, and sometimes gets up at 4-5am in the morning just to smoke outside in the garden, even in a T-shirt and shorts! I am worried, but at least unlike some couples, I know why he's done what he's done. He told me that he wants help dealing with the stress in work but doesn't know how to; he says he's got deadlines and thinks he can't get everything done - the boss wants a project that would take 6 weeks done in 3, which says it all really about the stress, doesn't it? We need help, and I would be interested to know how you can help me.

If this smoking is new then your husband must be under a GREAT deal of stress. Has he thought about other healthier ways of dealing with it. While smoking may help it is obviously an unhealthy way to deal with it. I would suggest you seek out a counselor in your area that can give you some ideas on ways to deal with stress. One way could be exercise. Your husband may not do this on his own so you asking him to do it with you could help his stress and be beneficial for your relationship.

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Dr. David Simonsen


I can answer all types of questions related to Marital issues. I will tell you straight what I think your challenge is and ideas on how to get through it.


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B.A. M.S. Marriage & Family Therapy; Ph.D. Psychology

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