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somebody please tell me how to adress this as i am very sensitive to smells, We have asked his mother NOT to smoke in the house. she smokes outside on the front porch and teh smoke just goes into the house anyway, Now she has taken to smokin in the garage. With the door open a bit on the bottom and the friggin door to the house wide open. My air conditioner goes NON stop. i have asked a million times to keep that door cold because the ac goes out the door and cools the rest of the house to the point its freezing in here. Then she will come in and say its cold . NO DUH. So back to the smoking. now she is sneaking upstairs and smoking in the bathroom ! MY house, brand new car , husands truck all smell like ciggarett smoke, We are in the process of selling the house and going to move to exclusive apartments . I am sick to my stomach to think that within a week that will smell like smoke too, Its gotten to the point where i am just depressed about everything and i dont even care if we move or not because i know she is just going to RUIN my new apartment too with the damn ciggaretts. i dont know what to do . i hate my life right now . and i get NO help from hubby about her . and its HIS mother.

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Does she have dementia or Alzheimers? If so, how bad is it? Is she dependent on you and hubby to get her cigs for her? If she can't obtain them on her own, don't get them for her. If she gets on you for not bringing home the cigs, just say "Oh sorry I forgot." Or, "you didn't ask for cigarettes." If she has memory problems she might believe you. This might sound awful but my grandma, with her sneaking around, being nasty and inconsiderate, outright lying and claiming "I don't know" "I never said that" "I don't remember", etc....well she just drove us to the point that we decided we could all play that game. Used to be, we knew she was manipulating us. Now she doesn't remember anything we told her 5 minutes ago anyway. It's your house and she's lucky you haven't put her in a facility.
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To those of you saying your parent wouldn't be allowed to smoke in a nursing home. Actually, I was shocked to find that this is not true. When I toured nursing homes for my mother -- and I was limited to nursing homes that could handle tracheostomy patients, so it's not a complete sampling -- I found that the majority had provisions for smoking patients. The one she is in currently has supervised smoking, where each patient has an individual, locked box with their cigarettes in it, and they go outside at set times of the day for supervised smoking.

Some people have suggested this model for the smoker who won't stop smoking in the house. If she's not able to make good decisions on her own -- and it sounds like she may not be -- then that might work. Personally, I would try for the e-cigarettes, since they don't have a smell and aren't trailing nicotine into the house on their hands and clothing.
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I realize how difficult it can be for someone to take in another person's parent...I have to assume that you pay all of the bills and your husband is a "stay at home house boy" since this is your desire that he apparently does not support you in. A non-smoker's life can just be ruined by the odor of cigarettes waffling in the house or garage from outside as this older woman insists upon smoking. This issue far outweighs the number of years she took care of your husband as a child, supported his desires, and helped to shape the man that he has become...Yes, indeed, this is the biggest issue you are likely to face with your MIL, and by all means, it would never be considered disrespectful for you to mandate to your husband's mother that she must quit smoking. Others have suggested the e-cig., perhaps you could take a moment and give that a try...unless keeping up with charging it is too much of an imposition for you.
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If you are dealing with dementia here, take her cigarettes away from her. Explain calmly that cigarette smoke makes you sick and she may not ever smoke in your house. When she wants a cigarette, you will give one to her once she goes to a place where she can smoke without it coming back into the house. She likely won't understand the explanation and will likely argue it, protest that she will comply, etc, etc. Don't give in and don't give her the cigarettes. Tell her the choices are no smoking at all or smoking with consideration.
WHY are you letting her move with you to your new home?? Maybe this transition is a good time to look at the big picture. Husbands often do whatever their wives enable them to do. As long as you accomodate his mom at the expense of your own happiness, it will continue. You have to look out for yourself.
I confess, this is 'do as I say, not as I do' sort of advice : )
Good Luck!!
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My husband & I are non-smokers and my mother lives with us. She is very frail, has copd & moderate alzheimers. We asked her not to smoke in the house. Once in awhile we would smell smoke coming from her room, and she would always deny smoking inside. I clean her room and noticed all of the ashes by the windows and then found ashes in her dresser drawers where she would hide her ashtray & matches. She also has burn holes in her pillow on her bed. She is like dealing with a 14 year old caught smoking. We had a confrontation, and again, I demanded she not smoke indoors. My husband put a smoke detector directly above her bed & we have a fire extinguisher right outside her door. Every few weeks we would again smell the smoke and bust her. She got very ill last summer and needed hospice to come in. They brought in oxygen for her, which she refused to use and never did. Her nurse made her hand her cigarettes & lighter over to me. She was not happy. Now she has to ask when she wants to smoke. We keep them hidden from her. At times I feel bad, taking that control from her, but then I have to remember that it is for all of our safety. Thankfully her health improved and she no longer needs hospice, but we still hand out her cigarettes because of her alzheimers. She is sneaky though, we have caught her only smoking half a cigarette outside and hiding the other half in her pocket to smoke when she wants. Who knows where she gets the matches. She doesn't drive, & can't walk more than a few feet at a time. I buy her cigarettes, which I feel guilty about. She said smoking is the only thing that makes her happy. I want her to be happy. But to me the cigarettes are the enemy. I watch her everyday get sicker & sicker, and move slower & slower. Our family has told her & her doctors & nurses all say she should quit. She is in denial and truly believes that cigarettes are not making her sick. I've tried pleading with her, being really nice about it, & being a badass about it, and nothing works. She will continue to smoke until it kills her. And I will continue to try to make sure it is outside.
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Okay, I'm going to play a bit of a devil's advocate here. I smoke. My husband smokes 4 packs a day if I let him (which I don't, since I really can't afford it), and he's diabetic, has vascular disease, etc.

My advice, as a smoker who will never quit, is to make a special place for your MIL to smoke. Keep her cigs so you know when she wants one, and escort her to where you want her to be. Make her comfortable, with a chair and a place with a book or something else she can do. Winter, the garage works nicely, although make sure she wears warm clothing, so you can shut the door to the house. In the summer, make a shaded place outside, so not even the garage is smoky.

My mother didn't want me smoking in her house when I stayed with her, so I went outside. I have consideration for others who don't want the health risk, etc. But, I also made sure I had a comfortable place to go, especially if I stayed overnight and wanted my coffee and cig in the morning.

Plus, if you make it into a nice time for MIL, with you acting as if her needs are important to you, you just might get her following the rules better. Those who do not smoke do not understand, truly, why we keep doing it. And, as the old saying goes, if I have to explain it, you really wouldn't understand anyway.

Other than that, my advice is to place her where she can have that smoke. My mother's NH allowed it outside. There are places that do. You may have to look around, though. Good luck.
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my family usedta go out for " dog " ( china buffet ) every now and then. this was back when there was still a smoking area in the resteraunt. i could get the boys rolling by my threats of rolling up a big cigar full of styrofoam and shredded tires to antagonize the non smokers. if i cant piss off everyone i meet id be a complete failure..
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As a former smoker, I highly recommend the e-cigs also. They are truly the answer to her inability or unwillingness to stop smoking and your need for a smoke free home and vehicles.

You'll probably have to be involved in charging and maintaining them for her, but that would be a small price to pay for a smoke free home, right?

Please feel free to contact me if you have questions about the e-cigs. Wishing you the best and a future with no smoke!
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As one who has battled the smoking issue from getting smoking banned at my university in GA, airplanes, and some military facilities, and smoke being a trigger for my migraines, I can well appreciate what you are experiencing. I say, put your foot down! Either mother-in-law stops smoking anywhere near you or your house, or you will move to your own place. Since your husband doesn't seem to care, let him live with her and enjoy the smoke. Just in case none of you have heard, second-hand smoke is more deadly and carcinogenic (cancer-producing) than smoking the actual cigarette. Humans have a "nicotinic receptor" in their brains and if you are sensitive to smoke, this will trigger that receptor. You can become "addicted" without smoking. So my best nursing and extensive smoking research advice to you is do not allow this situation to continue for your own health. By the way, smoke residue is impossible to eliminate. My husband flew aircraft when passengers could smoke, and the engines would get clogged from the nicotine residue. There were several planes of Boeing which crashed and the NTSB showed my husband the residue, so equate that with your lungs getting ruined! Also, when we wanted to buy a house, I would not buy a house that had been smoked in. Consequently, we built three new homes and I've had three new cars because the smell of smoke is unmistakable. Hope you get out of that situation!
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I so totally agree with arrow2stoozie. Find a solution, implement it and stick to it. The smoking thing didn't happen overnight. You probably should've stopped it in its tracks long ago. But it isn't too late. You also need to keep in mind that even though you ban MIL to the outside, she will come inside smelling like smoke and it gets on furniture and stays in the air for a long time. The e-cigs are a great solution. I'd tell her she must at least give them a try because you will not allow the other kind in your new home. Mean it and stick to it. Period. End of story.
What I find sad is you CAN find a workable solution but you've all but given up. You owe it to yourself to get the problem solved so you don't feel like a victim in your own home. Don't do that to yourself...not in YOUR home. Take charge.
I used to do a lot of handwringing, wailing, and threatening until one day I said this is BS. It's my life, my home, etc and I'm tired of being taken advantage of. So I took charge, found solutions, and I'm a whole lot happier.
How lucky you are to be moving into a new home. Get your joy back!!
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I've had the same issue with my mother. She knows no smoking is allowed in the house. No smoking period for her. (She has COPD, dementia, is in a wheelchair, & uses oxygen at night.) I am her caretaker. This is my house, my rules. She is not to partake of anything that's going to make caring for her more difficult. For years she just bullied people to do what she wanted - get her beer & cigs. My husband & I relented at first, then stood firm - now she knows she can't bully us. However, she still bullies others. (When my sister comes to visit I am not allowed to leave them alone together! Sister's request, as she wants to respect my rules & doesn't want mother to bully or guilt her into giving mom cigs.) Whenever mom goes to visit one of her relatives, (sister or son) she either gets cigs from them or sneaks cigs from them. Then as soon as she's alone in the house she'll light up. So I've resorted to discreetly checking her belongings when she comes back home. The biggest obstacle is the GUILT I have felt, wondering which is a correct course of action. Sure, she has "rights", but she wouldn't be allowed to smoke if she were in a nursing home. My mother is no longer physically "addicted" to cigarettes, yet the desire is still there. I've asked her to try to be content. When she finds that I've taken her cigs from her secret stash places she gets upset. I try not to react. Especially for people with dementia, it's important to keep their environment stable. If I were to wobble on this issue she would pounce on me like a cat on a mouse. Once there are set "rules" on the smoking issue it will make it easier for your husband to act in such a way as to enforce the rules, too - as in backing you up. (My husband hates the smoke, which makes it easier for me to be firm, out of respect for him.) It'll be a tough road for awhile, but if you remain steadfast this will be an occasional problem rather than a regular one. You can do it!
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friend you have to dig deep here...let go of the emotion and become clear. what are YOU willing to do to set the limits. Is your MIL mentally capable of understanding.
Do you make idle threats about leaving but do not follow through? Calm down become clear and focused and set your limits and FOLLOW THROUGH. This is a tough one, been going on for years..People need to respect one another when living together. Don't react just act. You can do this without sarcasm or yelling.
Make your plan and carry it out. Good Luck.
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Your house your rules! Tell her no smoking except outside or she can find another place to live. When you move, same rules apply. I am unfortunately a smoker, but I would never infringe my addiction onto other people. Nonsmokers has rights too!
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It is obvious your MIL and your husband neither give a rat's patoot about your feelings. So, if this were me, I would have a major meltdown and tell both of them that I was moving out until the situation was rectified and that you would not be available to either one of them if the smoking were to continue in your home. This is "your" home and you have the right to dictate what goes on inside or outside the property. Your personal health and peace of mind are at stake and you should tell Mom that she shows no respect for you---same with your husband.
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Give the E- cigs a try. Wow people that age and sick still smoke . I find this CRAZY. Maybe she feels she has nothing to lose anymore so who cares. But its harming and harmful to YOU! People really only care about their damn bad habits and what makes them happy in the moment. Tell her when you do move its a NON-SMOKING apartment .
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I went through this as well and you have to put your foot down. Number one it is not good to do this as it puts yourself in harms way with second hand smoke and utmost it could cause a fire in YOUR home or apt. She has to go outside and if you have to go with her like Eyerishlass said find a designated place for her to smoke but put your foot down and say NO SMOKING in my home or your apt. It is your right and your husband needs to understand - either it is no smoking or someone has to go. Sorry if I sound so cruel but it is just the way it has to go when you are all non-smokers and then you have this problem. Set those boundaries and stick to them. I wish you luck.
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Smoking inside should be a definite no-no. Can you confiscate her cigarettes so that she has to come to you when she wants to smoke? Then you can designate a place outside that's acceptable for her to smoke. It may not seem fair that she has to come to you if she wants to smoke but if you want to be able to control where she smokes and ensure that she smokes outside it might be the only way.
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MIL has dementia, right?

The sad truth is that you are probably not going to be able to reason with her or teach her new behavior. Not because she is stubborn or doesn't care about your wishes (although those things might also be true -- I sure don't know) but because her ability to reason and to learn is impaired. She has defects in her brain.

My mother has smoked for 78 years and has no interest in giving it up. But as it became clear that she could not live on her own much longer, and when all the decent ALFs we looked at had no smoking policies, we had her try out e-cigarettes. WooHoo! Worked like a charm. She is confused about them sometimes, and would try to light them with a match if she could find matches, but they seem to satisfy her addiction, give her something to do with her hands, and generally make her feel like things are "normal." But they don't stink up the house, burn holes in the carpet or chairs, and risk a fire.

They require charging and I don't think she could manage that and it might have been a tough solution to implement in an ALF. But as it turned out, she moved into my sister's non-smoking home and it is working out fine. She visits my non-smoking home one weekend a month, and I am truly grateful I don't have to deal with the issue you describe.

Do you think your MIL would try the "new fangled re-usable smokes"? My mom didn't care for them immediately but since smoking is an addiction and that is what she had on hand she kept trying them. She has no problem with them now. (She is nearly 93, with moderate dementia.)
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