Relatives Who Smoke


But if THEY don't care about smoking around babies/kids then why should you/DH worry about their feelings if you choose to stay at a hotel???

I totally agree with the pp who stated that she would be mad if someone tried to tell her what to do in her own home BUT by the same token, if it were me, I would (w/o being asked), make my best effort to keep it away from the kids and the babies!

Now if they can't even do that then why worry that you will insult/hurt them if you decide to sleep at a hotel?

Just playing devil's advocate here... :)


I realize that it's THIER house and they can do what they want in it, however, any 'honorable' host would usually think twice before making thier guests that THEY invited over uncomfortable.
I think it just goes to show how addictive cigarettes are.
I've ridden in cars with smokers who promise to not smoke during the ride, then 'have to' light up (and blow smoke out the window, as if that helps) after about 20 minutes.
Years ago, I was invited to dinner by a faculty member who was taking one of my classes. I should have known by the way he smelled in class (like an ashtray) that it would be an uncomfortable time. About 1/3 of the people there smoked, and by the time we were about 1/2 way through eating, several of them (including the host) lit up at the dinner table! I polistely asked if they could wait until after we were done eating, and I got out of there before dessert time because I couldn't stand it. My clothes reeked. Later, this guy said something to my department chair (in a casual conversation) about how rude it was of me to ask him to not smoke in his own house (that was at the dinner table). ( My department chair thought he was a jerk).


But if THEY don't care about smoking around babies/kids then why should you/DH worry about their feelings if you choose to stay at a hotel???
Can you just go up for the day, leaving before night? Sleeping in a house filled with smoke means breathing that crap in all night (even if no one is smoking, the mattress will reek of it, as will the curtains and carpets).
I think smoking around children can almost be considered a form of child abuse. Anyone these days should know the dangers of smoking and of second-hand smoke.

I've read that lung cancer is relatively rare in dogs...except for those who live with smokers. Just something to think about.

Being somewhat facetious: why not get them all 'the patch' for Christmas?
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Well, the situation is a little complicated this year, but it really drives home the reason why I WISH they could just take it outside, so I'll share: My DH's dad died earlier this year, from a massive heart attack. He was in his early 50s. He didn't smoke (at least, not on purpose), he was REALLY active (bicycling, golfing, kayaking, hiking, and he coached football and basketball for the local CYO), and he looked remarkably fit...but he lived with a smoker. For, like 30+ years.

The cause of death was heart disease, which I don't doubt was related to the years and years of secondhand smoke. Anyway, because she has just lost her husband, I'm not going to add to her hassles...this year.

But I told DH that in the future, we're either staying in a hotel or we're not going. At least, the dogs and me aren't. His family does do a little emotional blackmail - warning: massive family venting below. Skip the paragraph below if you want to avoid the frustration!

His Mom literally cried the first time he told her I was driving up separately so I could leave early, and she cried again when he suggested we stay in a hotel. Huge family arguments involving statements like, "Your mom is NOT a toxic person!" erupted. His sister (the one with the baby daughter who is currently enjoying a 2-pack-per-day habit courtesy of her parents and grandmother) called up and yelled at him for half an hour. In short, it is almost impossible to explain my issue with the cigarette smoke without everyone taking it personally.

My MIL has always had cats, and they all die of cancer at relatively young ages. It's incredibly sad when this happens and everyone comes over to comfort her (cigarettes blazing) and they all wonder why this keeps happening!

So anyway, yeah: they should totally be making the connection by now. They have to know, on some level, that they are poisoning the atmosphere of their homes...but as someone observed, living in denial is part of the addictive nature of cigarettes. I was flabbergasted the first time we went to visit and someone was holding my 6-month-old niece WHILE SMOKING. I spoke up on that occasion ("Hey, is that a good idea? I thought you guys were smoking outside because of the baby?") and they responded that they WERE smoking outside...except when it was raining. Or chilly, or if they were on the phone, or if it was inconvenient. Total denial.

Anyway, there doesn't seem to be a way to avoid it without actually stopping all visitation - and my DH is really close to the rest of his fam. This year is probably not the time to initiate this discussion/argument (although - HELLO - the cigarettes just killed my father-in-law, people!). But I told my DH that this is the last holiday I want to spend in the house, unless the indoor smoking stops (fat chance!).
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I understand that you want to avoid drama; especially since this is the first Christmas without your FIL.

Is it possible to spend next Christmas with your family or maybe just make plans to do something else?

They obviously aren't going to change to accomodate you. Unless you are willing to breathe in smoke for a couple of days every Christmas i would make other plans and start your own traditions with your husband.


I got my brother a T-shirt that read,


He's the kind of guy that can back up that threat too.

I don't assume this will help but I thought it was funny.

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