Gary started smoking when he was 19 years old because he wanted to fit in with his friends and it felt like everyone around him was a smoker. Fast forward 35 years and over 100,000 cigarettes later Gary is feeling proud to be officially smoke free! We spoke with Gary after completing his 12-week course with Yorkshire Smokefree.
What were your reasons for quitting?
My fiancé Mandy lost her husband to lung cancer. I didn’t want to put her through the pain of becoming a widow again and instead make the most of our lives together for as long as we can.
How did you access stop smoking support?
I had weekly one-to-one support at my local Doncaster clinic teamed with a prescription of Champix. Knowing that I had a deadline to aim for plus the weekly chats with my worker Stevie really helped me to handle my stress and I quickly started to feel calmer in myself once I stopped smoking.
What’s next for you?
I’m currently preparing to move in with Mandy and we’re exciting to be planning for our wedding next August! I’ve managed to save money already and I’ve loved being able to treat myself to some new clothes and take Mandy out for nice meals.
What would you say to your younger self before you smoked that first cigarette?
You might think in the moment it’s the coolest and best thing in the world, but it can affect your health and your future relationships. Just don’t start.
If you feel inspired by Gary's story and would like support in quitting smoking, register for a call back at: https://yorkshiresmokefree.nhs.uk/pages/callback-request