Welcome to GMFA's guide to stopping smoking
If you want to stop smoking, and most smokers do, then this website can help you. Quitting smoking isn’t easy, but lots of people do it and so can you. Every smoker already knows that it’s healthier to give up smoking so, although we will discuss the health benefits of quitting, we’re not going to nag or harass you. We know that if you are not motivated to quit, you won’t do it. However around 68% of gay men who smoke say they want to quit and another 17% are considering it. If you fall into either of these categories, we believe that you will find this website useful.
Gay men smoke more than the general population of men.1 We tend to start smoking at an earlier age and we continue to smoke for longer. In fact around 40% of gay men smoke tobacco in some form or another compared to 23% in the general population of men. For gay men living with HIV the proportion of smokers increases to around 48% and these men tend to smoke more cigarettes a day than gay men without HIV. We’ve therefore ensured that this website addresses your additional information needs if you have HIV.
We don’t know why gay men are more likely to smoke. It may be that for many of us, our social lives involve meeting friends in bars and clubs where smoking used to be allowed. It may be that when we were younger we were more likely to smoke as a way of fitting in. Whatever the reasons for gay men smoking, there are no reasons why gay men should find it any more difficult than anyone else to break the physical addiction to nicotine.
However, the physical addiction to cigarettes is not the only reason why quitting is difficult. If you want to stop smoking you will need to think about when you smoke and why you smoke.
This website will help you examine your habits, motivations and emotions around smoking; it will give you information on why smoking is so addictive and provide you with solutions to your physical withdrawal of nicotine. It will also suggest ways in which you can be supported as you quit smoking so that you increase the likelihood of quitting for good.
1 Consuming Passions - Findings from the United Kingdom Gay men's Sex Survey 2005. Hickson F., Weatherburn P.'Reid D., Jessup K. Hammond G.: Sigma Research (2007)