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WhyQuit.com banner. Want to quit smoking cigarettes or stop using e-cigarettes (e-cigs), bidis, kreteks, hookah, a pipe, cigars, dip, chew, snuff, snus, smokeless, chewing tobacco, or the nicotine gum, patch, lozenge, inhaler or spray?  Then you're in the right place!

Turkey's Triumphs: Page 8

Messages from Cold Turkey Ex-smokers Who Quit Smoking for at Least 1 Year

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Did you stop cold turkey?
Nicotine-free for a year?

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Our turkey's triumph victory messages
160 - 07/01/07

My wife and I quit smoking one year ago today. Our quit date is July 1, 2006

I just wanted to thank everyone involved with the WhyQuit and Freedom sites for providing me with the tools necessary to make our quits successful. I have looked forward to sending this email since the first day of my quit and now the time has finally come.

Keep up the great work. You are all making a wonderful difference!


Grant Smith

159 - 07/01/07

Well I've done it, I 've turned GOLD!

Just shows what a spur of the moment decision to support a work friend just over a year ago can do! That was on the 11th February 2006 and I went spent the next three and half weeks trying to quit smoking but still had the occasional puff last thing at night. It then became obvious that I was very close to complete failure and I felt angry and frustrated with myself. It was at this point that I stumbled on Whyquit and Freedom and with the knowledge and support I've found here I haven't smoked at all since 6th March 2006.

My work friend used patches for her quit smoking attempt which lasted about 5 weeks as far as I can remember, sadly she is back to smoking. Our joint quitting must have been memorable to her because last week she said that I must be coming up to my one year anniversary soon and that we should have a celebration. She wanted to know if I felt healthier - I think that is the first question I would have asked a quitter a year ago - but for me the greatest bonuses have proved to be (a) not having every hour of the day ruled by my need for nicotine (b) not feeling the humiliation of being a smoker any more (c) regaining some self respect and sense of achievement (d) hopefully I smell a bit better too!

Although I now go days without thinking about smoking at all, I do still sometimes get quite a strong momentory urge to have a puff and I think if I hadn't learnt all about nicotine addiction here I might at some point have thought I could have just that one smoke. That's the great stenghth of this place isn't it, not just teaching us how to get off nicotine but far more important how stay off.

So from the bottom of my heart I want to thank Joel, John and all the others for the wonderful education and my fellow quitters past and present for your friendship and support, I feel I know some of you now better than my own family!

~ 1 year free after 40+ years not.

158 - 06/26/07

I smoked since I was 13 and quit at the age of 48 because deep down I hated smoking. In my family I had a mum that chain smoked and a sister and brother that rarely smoked maybe 5 a day.

I announced to work colleges and family I was quitting & went cold turkey, having said this I was always known for being a man of my word and if I went back I couldn't stand the humiliation.

It's been a year now and I can't stand being near a smoker but leading up to this I lived through aggressive behaviour tantrums as I punched people for the shear heck of it, and had really bad headaches in the morning as well as the nightmares that have kept me up most of the night.

The biggest realization was that I did not know who I was anymore and always wondered what I was like before I started smoking because the mood swings were getting out of control and alienated all my friends and family. It went to the extent that they were pleading with me to get professional help or start smoking again.

The turning point was when my father died in March of this year. We all loved him and missed him and for some reason I have made peace with my self.


Rutene Johnson

157 - 06/13/07

I passed my 2 year mark on 06/06/2007 almost missing it. I rarely even think about smoking - although I'm always on the alert for those little thoughts that creep up in the strangest instances.

I wanted to thank you and the whole WhyQuit and Freedom from Tobacco team. I know that it's a personal journey - but had I not happened upon your sites at the same time as running out of cigarettes I would be puffing away today. Thank you from my lungs, my clothes, my teeth - and my life!

Please pass this around to your team or other users because I never thought I could do it - and now I'm at 2 years!!!



156 - 06/03/07

Greetings all cold turkey champions! I got to this website from a link on the "Cold Turkey" entry page on Wikipedia, and I truly commend what Joel and co. are doing to raise awareness about what is indisputably the most successful method of quitting.

Let me start by saying that prior to quitting, I had been smoking for 13 years, of which the last 5 were real heavy at a rate of 2 to 2.5 packs/day (that's a scary 40 to 50 cigarettes). All previous attempts at quitting had failed, and believe me when I tell you I have tried all other methods - some more than once. Finally, when we discovered that my wife was pregnant with our first child, we made a pact that the kid (and any future kids) shall grow up in a clean and healthy environment. Of course, I could always smoke outside the house, but that was not the point, really, because I also wanted to become a role model for my kids and help them understand the risks early on, hoping that my success story would inspire them to quit if they ever became smokers, or even better, avoid picking up the habit in the first place. This was a golden opportunity to finally try the cold turkey method, and so with support from my wife, who was a very light smoker but decided to quit immediately now that she was pregnant, I set off on the challenging road ahead.

That was in October, 1999. Which makes it, as of June 2007, SEVEN years and EIGHT months of clean and healthy living. I now have two boys aged 7 and 2.

When the subject of smoking comes up in casual conversation with family and friends, I always mention that going cold turkey is still the best decision I have ever made in my life (it comes second place after marrying my wife, if she happens to be around!) As I approach my eighth victorious year, not only has this decision transformed my life completely, but I have also become sort of an active advocate in the fight against smoking. During this time, I have successfully mentored two heavy-smoking coworkers into quitting cold turkey, after them being inspired by my story, and continue to offer moral support and motivation to see them through. As of today, I am proud to say that one of them is home and dry, having just celebrated his first year of clean living a couple of weeks ago. The second one is in his 5th month and he's doing great too. They are both married with kids and now I have become sort of a hero with their families! The feeling of accomplishment is just as amazing and fulfilling as it was when I succeeded in my own quest.

I hope my story, and all the other stories posted in this website, can inspire smokers who honestly want to quit to take immediate action. If you're a cold turkey champion reading this, then I have nothing but total respect to you. If you're a smoker looking for a way out, I hope all our stories give you the drive and motivation to set you on the right track. Always keep in mind that the most rewarding part of the challenge (apart from the obvious health benefits) is you being able to look back in pride and say "I did it!", because I firmly believe that if you can succeed in this, then no other challenge in life will appear too big. It will truly transform you as a person. Good luck!

Best regards,


155 - 06/02/07

Just thought I should finally post. It's been 18 months since my last smoke. Thanks to many factors but foremost is WhyQuit.com. My heart and lung felt thanks


154 - 04/29/07

My plan was to use some type of "quit smoking aide" to make it easier. When I started researching I found and was frustrated by the fact that it was just as expensive to purchase these "aides" as it was to continue smoking. More frustrating was that health insurance doesn't cover this either (ironically it would cover medical costs associated with any smoke related disease I may develop?).

In my search I found WhyQuit.com. Thank Goodness!! I began to read, the more I read the more it made sense particularly the part of quitting aides putting you in a state of chronic withdrawal and treating this like the true addiction it is by never taking another puff. Better yet, cold turkey was free! I told myself if I can just get thru the 1st 72hrs nothing could stop me as the physical addiction would be the hardest part. I was tired of being controlled by cigarettes and the psychological addiction I would conquer on my own.

I was throwing a party for my cousin 3-18-2006 and was smoking from the last pack of a carton of cigarettes. Midway thru that party I labeled that pack as my last. I had smoked for 18 years and my mantra was "been there done that, its time to quit".

3-19-06 I woke up cigarette-less with my coffee and all. I made it thru the day, saying to myself I have 48hrs to go and I am home free. The days became very long but I stuck with it as 72hrs came and went. Daily I would read information printed from the website that truly motivated me to stay the course.

When 3-19-07, my 1 year smokefree anniversary, came I deemed it a holiday representing one of my life's biggest accomplishments (with the help of WhyQuit.com) so I took the day off and will do so every year going forward.

Thank you WhyQuit .com...You helped save my life!!!!

Nancy C.

Former 18 year smoker.....1 Year 1 month 10 days SMOKEFREE ... and counting for Life!!!

153 - 04/19/07

I just wanted to let you know that a friend sent me your website link and after reading it for three days I stopped smoking. That was from 30 plus a day t to nothing, using no substitutes, and simply by saying each day, well, I got this far, let's try another day without tobacco.

The date I quit was 13th January 2006. I have been free of the weed for 15 months now, and my only complaint is that I didn't find WhyQuit sooner. I pass your web addie to everyone who says they are thinking of quitting. I figure that if it helped me it can help anyone. I have smoked for 30 years, since I was 12 years old, and thought I would never be rid it! You have no idea how pleased I am that I was wrong about that.

I found Whyquit such an inspiration, even though I never actually joined the forum. One of the main issues for me was never seeming to be able to sleep when I tried to quit in the past. I read on Whyquit about nicotine and caffeine interaction, realized that could be it, and switched to decaf in the evenings, and I slept properly from night one. Being able to sleep really helped my resolve, I can tell you!!

Now, the only clouds around me are the ones in the sky, where they should be!



152 - 04/03/07

This March on the 22 in 2007 makes it two years that I last smoked tobacco. Sorry Mr Nicotine, I don't need you.

\o/ Billy

151 - 04/01/07

Today is my one year anniversary of quitting cold turkey. I am 38 and have smoked since I was about 18. During that time I have tried many times to quit smoking but always relapsed. Now I know why. I did not realize the impact of taking a drag, of how that would spell the end of each quit. It was not until I found WhyQuit.com and read Joel's book that I learned what was really going on. I read that book many times during the first two weeks. It was like the "What to expect when you are quitting" book for me.

I was searching for help on the internet when I found this site. I feel that God guided me that day. He wanted me to live and to see my son grow up. My list of reasons for quitting is on my desktop on the home computer and at work. I read that list whenever I think about smoking. I come back to WhyQuit every couple of months to remember the whys I could not think of when I wrote that list. It continues to be a blessing.

I will never smoke another cigarette. You can do it too.


Mark K

150 - 03/30/97

Good morning Freedom and WhyQuit! This morning marks my 1st anniversary from nicotine. It has been an incredible journey with all sorts of ups and downs. Mostly ups! The day I truly realized that I was an addict was the day that everything came into focus and the word "doable" became a reality. This past year of lurking has been a wonderful experience! The class of 06 has been great along with a bunch of oldies like Shine Lady, Joe J, and Hillbilly. To paraphrase Dave, "quitting is simple, not necessarily easy, but simple".

Thanks again to all and have a wonderful journey through life! Oops! Thank you Joel and John! You guys are truly lifesavers.


Bill Wooldridge

149 - 03/24/07

What a blessing!! I have quit before, and always felt like I'M JUST NOT SMOKING...I was always missing "it" and thinking about not smoking, and look ma no hands...this time something has shifted. I no longer feel any longing for it. I am hypersensitive to how others smell who are smoking, I am not in the LEAST bit fond of the smell of that nasty stuff.

Cold turkey on 3-20-2006, my wife a day later. We are so blessed and happy. It was not even a struggle. I guess when you are really ready, everything lines up for you and you are just able to let go and be free. GREAT BIG DEEP BREATHS AND WATER.

Thank you for this site. It gave me the information, courage and conviction to decide that I did not have to smoke anymore if I do not want to. I do not want to and I have learned in this year, that I do not have to.


I AM a Winner

I AM that I AM

Peace be with you and NTAP

AND never give up trying to quit

I was a 2 ppd (pk per day) for over 25 years. I used a prayer and the AA principles from 12 steps. It worked.

Love and Light

Dave G

148 - 03/22/07

Just celebrated 1 year smoke free living on 3/19/07. I quit cold turkey after my son mentioned that my cough sounded bad and that statistically smokers die in their sixties. He said he wanted me to know my grandchildren and linked me up with the WhyQuit site. I'm 55 years old now and feel better than I can ever remember. Thanks for all the info provided on this website. It was very helpful as a quitting aid.


Bill Slabonik

147 - 03/20/07

Three years ago, on March 15, 2004, at 12:00 Midnight, I ended a 28 year addiction when I stubbed out the last cigarette I will ever smoke in this life in a hotel room in Santa Cruz, CA. I know you are supposed to say you are only quitting for the next minute, hour, day, etc; but I am in such a comfortable place with my non-relationship with nicotine now that I can confidently say that I will be nicotine-free for the rest of my life.

Because I know the secret to staying quit: NTAP!!! (Never Take Another Puff) I found this site the very next day and got educated. I learned that it's not about willpower, it's about understanding the law of addiction. It's about knowledge - the knowledge that I am a full-blown DRUG ADDICT and will be for the rest of my life. Sure, the first couple of weeks are difficult (but not impossible) and after that it's all gravy. As long as nicotine never enters my system, I got nothing to worry about.

My wife quit cold-turkey as well about a week before I did. As a bonus to the health benefits, the fresher smelling hair, clothes, car, house, etc., together we have saved over $10,000.00. Even the garbage smells better when it doesn't contain a packs worth of butts and ashes.

Anyway, that's my three year message. Quitting smoking is simple, just don't smoke. NTAP baby!!

Lee (aka Beavis)

146 - 03/19/07

Well I can't believe it has been an entire year already. What a wonderful feeling it is to know that I am no longer a slave to nicotine. This is my way of climbing on top of the highest mountain and screaming at the top of my smoke-free lungs I AM VICTORIOUS!

After many different quitting attempts my final quit date was 03/08/06. I, like many of the other people on your website, tried NRT with no luck. I would probably still be an addict if I hadn?t found WHYQUIT.COM. I finally understood my nicotine addiction and why I had to quit.

At the time I quit, I was 36 years old. I had smoked and chewed for over half of my life. Growing up I never had a chance due to the fact that my Mother and Stepfather smoked as well as my Father and Stepmother. I started experimenting with chewing and smoking when I was 16 years old. I started smoking and chewing full time the day I graduated from boot camp. I can still remember my friends and I running over to the commissary after graduation and all of us buying smokes and lighting up. It was from that point on that I was hooked. Back then almost everybody smoked or chewed in the Navy, but as time went on smoking became less and less acceptable. About one month after reporting to sea duty they designated several smoking areas on the ship. If you wanted to smoke you had to cram yourself into a small room with sometimes 50 other people smoking as hard as they possibly could to get in 2 or 3 cigarettes before their break was over. I should have quit back then because the smell was terrible, even for a smoker, but a nicotine addiction is a very powerful thing, and being an addict causes irrational thought.

My life went on, as did my addiction, for a very long time. Even as society was changing around me and smoking was being less and less accepted, I still kept on smoking. My entire life revolved around my nicotine addiction. It wasn't until 03/08/06 that my life finally changed. I had to go my cousin?s wedding in April of 06, and I was determined to not be that lone guy standing outside smoking while everybody else was having a good time inside.

After reading all of the stories on WHYQUIT.COM, I finally had enough willpower to quit. I took Friday off from work and had my wife get plenty of juice instead of drinks with caffeine in them. I rented some movies, bit the bullet, and got through the first 72 hours. I gave up alcohol for the first month, but should have given it up for at least two. I was sitting at a bar about a month after I quit, and my mind was rationalizing how just one or two smokes wouldn?t hurt. Luckily I got out of there before I cheated and had to start all over again from scratch.

After three or four months it kept getting easier, and I have never looked back. You never realize just how bad cigarette smoke smells until you quit. I still like to go out after work and have a few beers, but I have to take a shower as soon as I get home because I can?t stand the smell. Maybe someday smoking will be illegal in public places in PA.

I would like to close by thanking my wife for her understanding and support. I would also like to thank all of the folks at WHYQUIT.COM for posting their stories and giving me inspiration. I couldn?t have done it without you. Never take another puff, dip or chew ever!

Jerry Davis

145 - 03/13/07

I have been lurking on your site for a year now. I was surfing the web trying to find out how long it would take before the Welbutrin kicked in and made me a non-smoker. Thanks to google, WhyQuit popped up and I began to read. Everything I read made so much sense. I replaced the Welbutrin with Knowledge and thanks to WhyQuit, I am gold.

I still visit WhyQuit and I wanted everyone to know that just because you are a "lurker" does not mean that you have not quit. I am a lurker and a quitter!!! I would like to thank everyone who has taken the road before me and took the time to write it down and let me know that it does get easier and becomes absolutely doable!!! Once "drop to your knees" craves are now less than a passing thought. As others have already said, you really cannot even classify it as a "thought" because it is much shorter than that.

Now I pass the torch to the others that happen to ask how I did it. I simply tell them "WhyQuit." If they really want to know how and why, just click and read, read, read. I have been looking forward to sending this email for quite some time. I would like to thank everyone involved, but I would especially like to thank John. I have e-mailed him a couple times this past year and he has promptly answered me and answered my question to the best of his ability. Thank you John!!!

A very golden, Lori

144 - 02/13/07

1 year and 4 months without taking a puff!

I've tried so many times before but have always fallen flat on my face. But this time something was different. Your website. Despite all of the cravings, and there have been some whoppers, I have never once seriously considered taking a puff.

Once you pointed it out to me it was simple. I just can't afford to take another puff again. Ever!

Thanks. Andrea.

143 - 02/11/07

Five years of ash kicking!

40 years, most of those two/three packs a day. Six "tries" without any tools( education nor support) and FINALLY I was sent the Bryan Curtis Story and THAT very night I soaked them, and I have never looked back (except to read read read and follow the biblical philosophy - Know Thy Enemy ). Whyquit, Joel and John have been instrumental in my recovery along with some other support forums. This is Doable, It's Manageable and Then its MAGIC........

Nope Nada Never - Not One Puff

Jo Ann

142 - 02/05/07

I quit smoking three years ago on February 5, 2004 at precisely 3:27 PM.

On the previous morning I bought two packs of cigarettes and stuck a post-it-note to them indicating that "I'm going to quit smoking and when these are gone, I'm done!" It was that afternoon when I landed on the WhyQuit/Freedom site. The information I was reading was insightful and forthright (--and in itself somewhat intimidating and threatening to an active nicotine addict). That was when I ripped the post-it-note off the packs of cigarettes and went out and had yet another smoke. But I could not avert my eyes (mind) to some of what I had read, so like a moth to a light I returned to the site for more reading.

I was back the next day for more and soon started to get jazzed that maybe, just maybe, I could finally quit smoking after all. But with each little lifting of my hopes, I found myself scurrying outside for another cigarette. That afternoon in the midst of reading "Nicodemon's Lies", after returning from just such a smoking trip, I read the following lie: "Ok, I'm going to quit! Now I can enjoy my smokes until then" (...my post-it-note was proof I was going to quit!). And the initial reply: "If you've done this more than once, isn't it just more junkie head games?" ...followed by these 52 words:

"This addict wants to feel good about smoking nicotine and they've learned that by saying that they're going to quit, that they make themselves feel better even though deep down they know that it's just another lie! Unless something awakens this addict, there may never be a serious quit in their future."

The time was 3:25.

When an active nicotine addict is faced with the "unknowns" of what a quit might be like (fear - uncertainty - resentment - a forever longing?) compared to the familiarity and "comfort" that their regular fixes have always brought them, piled on top of words written by someone who seemingly had a Kreskin-like ability to read the inner-most secrets of my mind's denials (to TRUTH no less...how dare he)?its no surprise to me that it took a couple of minutes to mull over a choice.

I think (know) that quitting smoking and arresting our addiction to nicotine is all about making choices. We can choose to quit or choose not to. We can choose to make our quit strong or choose to let it be weak . We can choose to weather out the tough parts or choose to let the drug pull us back to despair. We can choose knowledge or choose the darkness. We can choose freedom or choose nicotine's chains. Three years ago, after two very long and self-reflective, contemplative (disturbing) minutes, those 52 words finally did wake me up and I chose to become free. I don't ever regret it!

John Polito wrote: "Imagine entire days, weeks, months and possibly even years, where your mind never once "wants" for a nicotine fix. Imagine living in a constant state of 100% total comfort with no smoking related anxieties whatsoever - none, zero, nil, complete and total tranquility". While this could only serve as a beacon for me when I first quit, I don't have to imagine any of it because I am living in complete comfort and have been for a very long time now! It is deeper and more satisfying than could be dreamed. This non-smoking comfort is there for every quitter to have. If you keep nicotine out of you (not a single puff, no matter what), you can't stop it from coming. But ultimately in the end, your freedom and the comfort you reach will be up to you...

...and a choice made.

Richard (after more than 33 years of smoking, FREE for 3!)

141 - 02/09/07

I went to the doctor for a regular check up and I took my oldest son with me. We are best friends. I am 35 and he is 16 now. The doctor fussed at me about smoking as she always did. She told me the dangers and how I was going to die at an early age. I quickly diverted her attention to my son about how he had some bad grades in school. Well she fussed on him for a while, and then told us to promise each other that if he would get A's and B's I would quit smoking and vice versa. I told her yeah yeah just to hush her up about it.

She went on to tell me that she would give me medicine to help me quit and I tried it but it did not work for me. I tried the patches, but later found out "hey, I can smoke with these on." So that failed as well. 2/10/05 at 11:40 a.m. my wife and I quit together. It was rough, but along about April I came across WhyQuit. I began to relay the stories back to my wife, we would talk about them and how we didn't want to end up like that. So to make a long story short 2/10/07 we will be quit 2 years. For all of you out there that just started or for the ones that are struggling, just hang on. It does and will get easier each day. Give it to God and he will help you through.


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Created 02/14/07 and updated 06/19/18 by John R. Polito