I’m not giving up vaping.

Whether you call it vaping, juuling, vusing—I am addicted to nicotine. Despite what I’ve been told all my life about the so-called dangers of nicotine, I continue to vape.

I don’t care what you do with your body. Vaping has nicotine like smoking, but at least you’re consuming just nicotine, and not all the ”bottom of the barrel shit”—as I call it—that comes in cigarettes. While upfront costs can be anything from a few dollars to several hundred, buying a bottle of vape juice, or even a few pods, can last far longer than a box of cigarettes.

I have tried giving up several times. Every time left me with severe ”smoker’s flu”, and all the stuff out there meant to help us ”quit” are either more nicotine products, or big pharma drugs that require me to pay copays and coinsurances. (If nicotine is so dangerous, why are products meant to “wean” us made with the same drug, and why hasn’t the government banned it?) I have known several people who lived to a ripe old age, who smoked several packs of cigarettes daily, yes maybe they had lung issues, but it didn’t affect their quality of life.

Unlike most people, I now consume more nicotine than when I smoked. I started smoking because I saw how it relieved stress with coworkers, and wanted to experience their ”smoker’s paradox”—despite being a stimulant, nicotine instead relaxed them. Vaping doesn’t have the combustion and smoke cigarettes causes, which upset my stomach so kept me at only 1-2 cigarettes per day. Vaping doesn’t combust (vaping comes from the fact our mods ”vaporize” nicotine), and the juices had a nice flavor I could smell, so I switched over. Vaping doesn’t affect the mouth like chewing tobacco does; it’s way cheaper than cigars.

Besides cleaning up my eating, trying to exercise a few times weekly, trying to get outside daily during these colder times to still get some vitamin D, cut down on the alcohol consumption, I think I lead a decently healthy life. Vaping is like a snack that helps me avoid consuming unnecessary calories when a craving it; helps me socialize with others outside in the fresh air during our breaks at work; helps calm me down when anxiety hits, or feel better when depression hits. Vaping helps me from relapsing back into alcoholism.

Yes, I know there are ”better” coping mechanisms to help with my anxiety and bipolar disorders, with my weight issues, with a lot of things. Vaping is an affordable one-stop solution, and is one of the few vices I afford to keep things in check; it helps balance pain and pleasure. Moderate vaping is fine as long as you eat healthy, exercise regularly, and helps keep the rest of your shit together.

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