I have been convincing my grandmother to quit smoking for four years. Unfortunately, I couldn’t convince her to at least try to minimize her daily consumption no matter how persistent I was in reminding her of the health risks of smoking and how much it could affect the other household members.

When I had a chance to go to Ongpin in July, I asked the saleslady if she could offer me a Chinese product which could substitute a cigarette without leaving my grandmother a feeling of deprivation or conjured wanting. She said they didn’t have anything like that but they had cigarette filters. I almost freaked out and told her in reply, “How could you offer me something that is exactly the opposite of what I’m looking for?” I didn’t lose hope so after a few moments of silence I asked again, “What could my grandmother possibly use to help her quit smoking.” She rolled her eyes as if she was thinking. After that pause she asked the other salesladies but they stared at her in surprise and couldn’t figure whether they wanted to smile or think. Then she went to the stock room and asked somebody else. It took me a few minutes to patiently wait. When she came out, she handed me a pack of cigarette with Chinese label. I asked her what that thing was for. She told me to ask my grandmother to smoke it all so she’d never want to smoke again. “Are you sure it’s effective?” I asked again. She shrugged her shoulder and said, “Just do as I said.” Perhaps I was convinced or fooled but it was a great relief to find out that something could make my grandmother stop smoking. I thanked the lady and finally paid it including the rest of the products I was requested to buy. I’ve read that there are medical products for quitting smoking but my grandmother would never want to see a doctor, especially if it’s about quitting smoking since, accordingly, this is her only vice.

As I reached home, I asked her to finish the pack of cigarette I bought her as I motivated her the benefits of nonsmoking. She didn’t do it at once but eventually tried to smoke one stick. When I asked her what the effect was, she said nothing it didn’t taste good but she still wanted her brand. I insisted that she had to finish the entire pack but she kept it instead.

Until recently, after my persistent attempts to convince her to quit smoking with admonishing words and some disgusting remarks, she decided to smoke the Chinese cigarette again. I didn’t react at all when I saw her because I didn’t want to be disappointed again. After we had lunch, out of the blue she uttered that the Chinese cigarette kept her from wanting to smoke her brand. She told me she wanted to keep trying even at least for a few puffs but she lost her craving. I really hope she’s freed herself from this dreadful habit so I can also be finally free from the worse effect of secondhand smoking.


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