PBS Kids GO! It's My Life
Smoking: From The Mentors

From Tiffany
I have smoked, but it was a lesson I was being taught. My Mom gave me a cigarette right out the pack. She asked me if I ever thought about smoking. I told her yes. She then asked me why. I probably said something about smoking being cool and adults I knew smoked, so it had to be fun. So, she lit the cigarette and told me to smoke. Of course I inhaled and began coughing. She took and extinguished the cigarette and patted me on the back. She told me if I ever smoked again I would smell, my teeth would become ugly, and I would cough like that again, and if I was in front of friends they would think I was stupid. So I never had an urge to smoke. From that day forward, I always remembered my experience. If you're trying to resist smoking, you should know that it's not as fun as it may seem. You don't become "cool" or popular because you smoke. Your clothes smell after smoking and so does your breath and nobody wants to smell that. After smoking for a while, you become addicted. With cigarette prices going up I don't think anybody can afford to be a smoker because not only is it costly but you're risking your health. Besides, many people are trying to make smoking illegal in public places, so the only place you could smoke would be at your home and not many people can afford to stay home all day to smoke. So, just don't start. It's not worth it.

From William
I have smoked before. I only did it a couple of times and it was purely out of curiosity about what was so cool about cigarettes. I'll tell you this: they taste bad, they get you light headed, and after a while they can seriously start to affect your body. The best way to resist peer pressure to try smoking is to not hang around those kids that do smoke. If you have to hang around them just stay strong and say no. Understand that the majority of kids in America don't smoke and don't use drugs, so you not smoking cigarettes isn't uncommon. Trust me, you'll still be cool without the cigarette.

From Jenna
I tried a cigarette once when I was with a small group of friends. We all did it together only because we were curious. We had no intention of starting, we just wanted to see what all the fuss was about. I was really happy I tried it because it definitely killed my curiosity. I coughed a lot, my throat burned, and I felt really dizzy. I hated every part of it, and I realized after that it was something I planned on never doing again. If you're having a hard time saying no, keep reminding yourself what a strong person you are being by saying no. Think about the awful smell and the gross smoke going into your lungs. Kids that smoke want to look cool and fit it, which is why they must have people around them smoking as well. Some kids build up the image of smoking to be sexy, cool, wild, and fun. This is NOT the case. Smoking can be very unattractive to many people, especially when you hug someone and smell their clothes and hair that reeks with smoke. You are the cooler person for being an individual!

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