Do you remember your first time—with cigarettes, that is? Was it love at first puff? Or did you have a one night smoke and then call it quits? How about now? Still flirting? Maybe you hook up every once in awhile after school or at parties on the weekends. Or maybe you and cigarettes have started seeing a lot of each other. Could you be dating? Do you officially have a cig-nificant other? Breaking up is hard to do (especially with your cigarettes), but it might be the right thing for you.


Not sure what your relationship status is? Click the plus signs below to learn more about the different types of relationships people have with cigarettes.


One night smoke click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

You hit it and quit it. You tried it out, realized you didn’t like smoking so you moved on.


What this means: You dodged a bullet. Many teens who experiment with smoking go on to become lifelong smokers—and suffer the serious health consequences. Nowadays, you are all about healthy relationships, so you won’t be tempted to flirt with smoking again.


Flings click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

You and cigarettes occasionally hook up at certain places or in certain situations, like parties or at a friend’s house. You’re experimenting with different brands and just having fun playing the field.


What this means: Flings can be fun, but someone usually wants to get serious after a while. Even if you only hook up once in awhile, you can get hooked—on nicotine. You may not be looking for a long-term relationship, but you should know that every time you hook up with cigarettes, you’re falling farther and farther in “love.”


Friends with Benefits click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

You hook up with cigarettes when you’re feeling stressed out. It’s no strings attached, just stress relief.


What this means: Friends with benefits might seem like a good idea, but let’s face it—somebody always gets hurt. Smoking may make you feel better temporarily, but there is no such thing as a safe cigarette. This friend with “benefits” will leave you totally damaged.


Bromance click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

Cigarettes are like your wing man or wing woman. You always bring them with you wherever you go to help break the ice in new or awkward situations to get the party started.


What this means: Think your bro has your back? Think again. Relying on cigarettes to make you look good can backfire. Smokers are often seen as less attractive and more nervous than non-smokers. Awkward!


Dating click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

You and cigarettes get together pretty regularly. You hang out every day before and after school and on the weekends. At this point in the game, you’re only with one brand of cigarettes and seeing where things go.


What this means: Now that you and your cigarettes are spending more time together, you may start to notice some “red flags”—things that spell trouble for happily ever after. The stank that clings to your clothes and fingers after every date. The zits that won’t go away. The unfortunate breath. It can be tempting to ignore these warning signs, but if you are honest with yourself you will know it’s time to move on—this is not “The One.”


Facebook Official click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

It’s official, you’re in a committed relationship. You’ve been smoking regularly now for more than a year and you hang out pretty much 24/7. You and your cig-nificant other are going strong, and you don’t have any plans to quit this relationship any time soon.


What this means: You are caught in a bad romance. You know the ugly, and you know the disease—but you’ve made a choice to stick by your cigarettes. Or maybe you are just staying because it’s easier than breaking up. Whatever your reasons, remember that you do have a choice in the matter. Just because you are Facebook official doesn’t mean that you can’t change your mind.


No matter what your relationship status is, it’s important to decide if this is what you really want. Are you in it for the long haul? You should know that the longer you stay in this relationship, the harder it will be to bail.


Before things go any further, ask yourself the following questions about your relationship:


Are you falling harder than you think? click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

You aren’t looking for a serious relationship, and you can take or leave cigarettes. At least that’s what you tell yourself. But lately, you spend a lot of time thinking about cigarettes—when you will see them next, how you can get them, and the things you two might do together. You are hooking up more and more often, and you find yourself missing them when they aren’t around. The truth is, you need cigarettes more than you care to admit. You don’t have to smoke every day, or even every week, to get hooked on nicotine. Think about it—there’s a reason you keep coming back for more.


Is your relationship high maintenance? click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

Do your cigarettes dictate where you go, what you do, and who you do it with? Your parents hate cigarettes, so forget about smoking at home. Cigarettes aren’t allowed on school property, so you can only see each other in the parking lot after class. You can’t take them to the movies, out to eat, or anywhere else normal couples go. Even worse, you have to worry about washing your hands; covering up their smell; burning other people, your car, or your clothes; and being in love with a liar.


Not only is it hard to find time for the two of you to be together, but your dates aren’t exactly cheap either! Cigarettes need lighters, matches, etc. to light the fire between the two of you. Not only that, but cigarettes usually travel in packs. Smoking a pack a day can cost you about $3,000 a year!


It can be exhausting and expensive trying to keep up with the demands your partner requires! Is this relationship really worth it?


Are you in a toxic relationship? click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

We all have that friend who’s in a relationship with someone they know isn’t good for them. No matter how much that person hurts them, they give it one more chance, and another, and another. Every time they get burned, they swear it’s the last time and that they’re not going back. But, they always do. You’ve seen your friends do this a hundred times, and you swore to yourself that you would never do that!


Or would you? How many chances are you willing to give cigarettes? 5? 10? 100? Every time you smoke, cigarettes are causing permanent damage to your body. Besides putting toxic chemicals into your body, cigarettes can stunt the development of your vital organs. Teens who smoke have smaller, weaker lungs than teens who don’t, and may never reach their maximum lung capacity as adults. Teens who smoke also show signs of heart stress, including physical changes to the heart muscle itself, and a higher resting heart rate. These are warning signs that the heart is working extra hard. Maybe you’ve noticed other negative consequences from smoking too. You can’t taste things when you go out to eat, you’re constantly breaking out, you’re always sick, your fingers and teeth are turning yellow, and you can’t really see in the dark as well. But, you keep smoking. Um, isn’t that kinda the same thing your friend does? Just saying…


Does your wingman really have your back? click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

Don’t know what to say to the hottie you’ve been eyeing at the party? “No problem,” you think to yourself, “I’ll break the ice by asking her to bum a lighter.” Want some one-on-one time with her? You just ask her to join you outside for a smoke. Your wingman’s always there to help you out with the ladies, right? Wrong.


What your wingman might not know is that about 80 percent of teens don’t smoke. So breaking the ice by asking for a lighter might be a little harder than you think. Your wingman also might not know that smokers are often seen as less attractive and more nervous than non-smokers. Don’t believe us? Check out the Smokefree Teen Tumblr page to see what other teens are saying about smokers behind their backs.


Are you staying in this relationship because it’s comfortable? click plus sign to expand and minus sign to minimize

At this point in your relationship, you might be smoking with the same people, at the same time, in the same place, and while you’re doing the same thing. Perhaps you’ve thought about breaking up once or twice, but you’re afraid that if you do, all of your friends will hang out with your “ex” and not you. Or you’ll have to find new places to hang out because of your “ex.”


Have you ever considered that you might be missing out on meeting new people or experiencing new places and things because of your relationship? Have you ever thought that smoking might be holding you back from doing the things you really want to do? You’ll never know unless you try! Letting go of the familiar can be scary, but you are young and have your whole life ahead of you. Do you really want to settle? Just cause you started dating doesn’t mean you have to keep going —you made a choice, and you could make a different choice.


Do you know a deal breaker when you see one? Sometimes relationships, no matter how much you want to make them work or how long you’ve been together, just aren’t good for you. It might be time to think about calling it quits. Breaking up is hard to do, but in these situations, it might be the right thing for you.


How to Break Up with Cigarettes


When you’re ready to call it quits, START by doing the following:

  • Pick a day to break up.
  • Write a break up letter. It might sound dumb, but Colin Farrell wrote a break up letter to his cigarettes when he quit smoking. It’s a great way to address all the reasons why your relationship isn’t working anymore and help you move on.
  • Figure out how you want to break up. There are many different options so check out the following to see which is right for you:
  • Breaking up via text message
  • Breaking up over the phone
  • Breaking up online
  • Avoid places and situations where you and your cigarettes used to hang out. Going to these places will only remind you of your time together and may make you miss them.
  • Get rid of all of the things that remind you of your “ex.” Matches, lighters, ashtrays, pictures of the two of you—everything!


Need Break Up Survival Skills?


Feeling down or stressed out about your break up? Tempted to hook back up with your “ex”? Don’t do it! Whatever reasons you had for breaking up will still be there, and you’ll only feel worse about your decision to hook up afterward. Instead, get some break up survival skills from the Smokefree Teen Tumblr page to help you stay focused on leaving cigarettes behind for good.


Breaking up is hard to do
(especially with cigarettes)