Mallory said he began smoking in eighth grade in 1958 because it was the “in thing” to do at the time. He admitted he previously tried three or four times to quit smoking over the years but said it wasn’t until the incentives were there that he took the leap of faith.
“About that time, a lot of buildings were becoming smoke free, including the ones at TXU,” Mallory said. “It was just time for me.”
Texas Tech University’s Lee Cohen, a smoking cessation expert and clinical psychologist, says cigarettes are a legalized drug and quitting is never easy.
“Quitting any addictive drug is complicated. Quitting smoking is even more so because it’s a legal drug,” Cohen stated in an e-mail. “It’s associated with so many things. Smokers often wonder, ‘What am I going to do with all this extra time? How am I going to drink my coffee without a cigarette? How am I going to eat my meal without a cigarette?’ It’s part of everything they do, which makes quitting more difficult.”
Simply putting on a patch in an attempt to quit will yield mixed results, he said.
“It’s standard to offer smokers medication, but medication alone won’t be enough,” Cohen said.
“It’s not as simple as just slipping on a patch. People should get into a group with people they can talk to. It’s interesting how someone who tries and fails numerous times can be very successful when they’re talking to people who understand what they are going through.”