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It can be challenging to stay quit if your partner or the person you live with smokes. It's good to plan ahead if you decide to quit with your partner or someone else.

My partner, or the person I live with, smokes

Though most people want to quit smoking, not everyone is ready. Your partner may quit eventually but they may not be ready to quit with you. If they do want to quit too, see quitting with a partner or quit buddy, below. If not, it’s important to discuss what you might need from them.

Things to consider if you live with a smoker:

  • Is the house smokefree?
    • Making the house smokefree is very important, and will increase your chance of quitting. If your partner absolutely won’t budge on this, try to negotiate a smokefree area in the house (that will at least help).
  • How will you catch up without cigarettes?
    • Many couples catch up together at the end of the day and smoking is often part of this. How will you get this important catch-up time when you quit smoking? Discuss this with your partner. Is there a different place, time or way you can have that essential, relaxing, social catch up with your partner?
  • Keep cigarettes out of sight
  • What kind of support do you want?
    • Discuss with your partner how you’d like to be supported: do you want to be asked how you’re going, or do you prefer to keep the quit talk to a minimum?

Quitting with a partner or quit buddy

If you decide to quit with someone else (your partner, a person you live with or a quit buddy) you’re likely to benefit from the extra support.

What to discuss?

  • Everyone is different.
    • Nicotine addiction levels differ. Some may need nicotine replacement products or quitting medications, others not.
    • Smokers have different smoking habits and routines, and deal with stress differently. Some smoke because of boredom, others smoke when restless, or simply because they’re addicted.
    • Most smokers have quit many times before. Everyone is at a different place in terms of their skills and readiness to quit. You may be closer to quitting for good than your quit buddy, or vice versa.
  • What happens if one of you slips up, or relapses?
    • Make a plan for this. Realistically, most smokers make a number of attempts before they quit for good. Slip-ups and relapses are common, and being prepared can help.