Is this outrageously inconsiderate or....

  1. am I simply being hypersensitive?
    I have this problem at home that is killing me. I am an asthmatic. I've been in a sort of remission with very mild asthma symptoms for a few years (no control or rescue meds needed.... nothing that a primatene mist inhaler couldn't take care of, maybe 1x per year).
    So now I'm in a flare. I am on Advair and have an albuterol rescue inhaler, neither of which are working. Where I live it is very humid, the pollen count is astronomical, I am just having a very difficult time breathing.
    Ok, so my S.O. is a smoker. She *refuses* to stop smoking or to smoke outside. So lately she'll come home and sequester herself in the back end of the house instead of interacting with me, talking to me, asking me how my finals were, etc. When I called her on it, she said that since she can't smoke around me, she can't be around me. She can't be bothered with going outside every 10 minutes to smoke.
    First of all, she doesn't smoke every 10 minutes. She smokes about a pack of day.
    Secondly, why isn't my respiratory health important to her?
    Thirdly, why is she being so freaking evil about it? Granted, I've never been a smoker, and I don't know what the addiction is like, so maybe I'm being unreasonable.

    So is she out of line, or am I hypersensitive?
    Appreciate any opinions........ I'm getting ready to move her out into the shed where she can smoke all the time (hey, its got electricity).
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  2. 17 Comments

  3. by   cargal
    No, you are not hypersensitive. Your health is a serious issue and your s.o. is not suporting you or helping in any way. That you feel isolated is an abomination. This person is behaving in a very immature and selfish fashion. Take care of yourself and your health. This should be a top priority for you AND your S.O.
    I would wonder if this is one of those red flags that people who have left dysfunctional worn out relationships speak of?
    There is not a relationship out there in which one person or the other doesn't act selfish or immature at times. But if this continues without resolution, I would wonder if there isn't some other underlying feelings on your partners mind.
  4. by   Sleepyeyes
    Ok, I don't get it....

    When I smoked, my hubby smoked with me. When I quit, he would smoke around me, because I insisted it didn't bother me. If it seemed to bother me, he'd go somewhere else.

    Then we moved. The house was smoke-free, and the less I was around smoke, the more I liked it. I asked hubby to please please please not smoke in the house. That was 6 years ago.

    He smokes on the screen porch and has never bytched about it. :kiss He enjoys his "quiet time" (in fact, he calls the whole area "his cave" :chuckle ) and we still have plenty of time together. Sometimes I join him out there for coffee or to read the paper or to just enjoy being togther. He smokes about 2 packs a day and I wish he'd quit but I don't say that to him because he'll quit when he's ready, like I did.

    But if I had a serious lung problem such as you're having, and he treated me like your partner is treating you.....well, that goes beyond a smoking issue, IMHO.

    She essentially is saying that she has no control over her addiction but doesn't seem to understand that you have no control over your lung condition. Why? is what I don't get. Both her addiction and your condition are equally compelling physical problems playing pouty games can only hurt your relationship.

    You both definitely need to have a chat and work something out before you wind up in the hospital.
  5. by   CEN35
    i don't think you are overeacting at all. although, i'm sure many would disagree. i have asthma also...but throwing that aside, i never smoked, never will and could never be around a significant other that did. that's just me, no offense to anybody.

    me
  6. by   Mary Dover
    To quote Carrie..."I would wonder if this is one of those red flags that people who have left dysfunctional worn out relationships speak of?".......I think so.
    Rebecca..it's a respect issue (or LACK of I should say) on her part as much as it is anything. She could at least go outside to smoke. Isolating herself from you, and continuing to smoke in the house sounds like a passive-aggressive thing to me.
    Hope you two have a communicative relationship. If so...talk to her about it, but try to avoid sounding confrontational...that only puts people on the defensive and won't get you anywhere in trying to resolve a problem.
    It's likely a problem bigger than (or at least different from) the actual smoking thing.
    Take care...good luck....and God bless you and your S.O.
    Mary
  7. by   delirium
    I'd like to thank everyone for their input.

    The thing is, I think I've always been supportive of her, but obviously it is not being returned. I plan to discuss this with her tonight and see if we can come to some kind of understanding, and if not, then I'll explore other avenues.

    Any ideas on how I can bring it up without making her all creepy and defensive? I'm not good at that. Or maybe its that she isn't good at receiving.

    Thanks again,
    Reb
  8. by   MPHkatie
    I think probably bring it up just point blank and none of the apologizing fifty times will help you get the point across. My Dad was/is a pipe smoker and quit for 14 years because it was bad for his kids. Now we're out of the house he sequesters himself in his room or out on the porch to smoke because it bothers my Mom. Is this person more attached to cigarettes than you? I would have to agree with the others something else is probably going on and it is being played out through this cigarette war, but you know, when you can't breathe- one should respect that. Good Luck, let us know how it goes.
  9. by   LilgirlRN
    Do we live in the same place? I haven't had asthma in no kidding, 35 years and now suddenly have been slammed by the pollen and humidity so hard that it's taken me 2 weeks with inhalers, zithromax and steroids to get over it. Not quite sure how I would handle your situation...maybe she feels guilty to some degree? That would explain her strange behavior. I am sure it makes her feel bad to see you struggle to breathe, may make her scared too...many smokers live in denial. To see what will happen to her if she continues to smoke...COPD, emphysema all conditions where you cannot breathe, this would make me nervous if it was suddenly put in my face. You 2 should just sit down and have a heart-to-heart. Good luck, hope you feel better and that ya'll can work things out Wendy
  10. by   delirium
    Wendy:
    I live in Maryland. Its terrible here for asthmatics. The only place I've ever been that is honestly worse was Texas.
    I just don't get it. Her parents are both deceased, both at relatively young ages, her mother for respiratory failure and her father for lung cancer. That would deter me, I would think.
    We're definitely going to have a chat about it tonight. I'll let y'all know how it goes.
    Thanks for your support,
    Reb
  11. by   Zee_RN
    Oh, my Rebecca. I do hope your chat went well! You are not overreactive; this is very serious stuff. Had a young girl in ICU on the ventilator from a bad asthma attack...and we had a hard time getting her off the vent. Her poor family was sick with worry.

    Definitely sounds like this more than just a "but I WANT to smoke" issue. An "I want to smoke more than I want to be with you" sounds like a wake-up call, I'm sorry to say.

    I'm married to a smoker. I don't have any respiratory problems but out of respect for me and the kids, hubby only smokes in the basement-gameroom or outside. And still finds plenty of time to be with us. (He's also about a pack-a-day.)

    ((Hugs)) Positive thoughts & energy sent your way....
  12. by   hoolahan
    My hubby also smokes, but after I we had kids, neither of us smoked inside, and after I quit, he continues to smoke outside.

    On a similar note, my airway is reactive to fumes. Hubby is a clean-freak, and he will go nuts with a clorox bottle if I let him. I honestly don't know how he can stand to be so close to those fumes and still breath (maybe the smoking has really killed his sense of smell??) Anyway, he will try to do his clorox thing when I am not home, b/c he knows how much it bothers me, even tho I think he thinks it's psychological!

    The bottom line is, you are not asking your so to quit, just to be considerate of your very real health problem. The fact that she is blowing this off should send up red flags to you. If someone cares about you, they will make small sacrifices for you. Heaven forbid you ever have children, then what? It's just selfish if you ask me. I do hope you are upfront with her. I remember I used to be afraid to have those kinds of talks with my husband. The first time we had a biggie (fight) I waited until he had laryngitis. He was feeling crappy, and couldn't yell!! We were arguing about him helping me more around the house (see, it went from that to clorox! I created a monster!) I screamed at him "Going to work, is like going to a resort hotel!!!! This right after my son was born, had colic, he cried all the time, and I never had sleep, and my husband was not helping me at all, and I threatened to leave him. It's been uphill ever since I was brutally honest about how I felt and what I needed in order for our relationship to continue. I guess he really loved me b/c I never have to ask him to help me now....ever!
  13. by   shay
    I quit smoking for my husband before we ever dated. He wouldn't date me if I smoked. I loved him and wanted to be with him (we'd been friends forever), so I quit. Case closed.

    To me, if she loves you and respects you, she shouldn't smoke around you if you ask her not to, period. End of discussion.
  14. by   caroladybelle
    You are not over reacting - love should understand that you should not be around smoke. When I lived with a smoker, the house was messy, my health was lousy and the smell permeated food, clothes, everything. And as I am a former smoker (clove cigerettes, no less) you would think that it would not bother me. But the farther away I get from my smoker days, the less that I can tolerate it.

    It is sad when people's lives are so completely controlled by a mere plant that they allow it to hurt them and the people around them.

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