I met a young man in his early 20s last year who smokes at least two packs of Benson cigarette every single day. The chain smoking habit of his makes him cough dangerously. For me, I am sure he knew he is doing bad to himself because matters of addiction are not easy to address. I was looking for the best way to approach him and the approach must be non-judgemental.
On this fateful day, I started a conversation with him by asking him when he started smoking. He told me he started at age 13 without the knowledge of his parents. I was surprised he started smoking that early but I did not show it. I began to talk to him about some addictions I picked up as a teenager too and how I conquered them after a long struggle.
He felt at home with me and he said, ” why are you telling me all these and why are you not judging me?” I gladly answered him that I could feel his struggles. He then opened up to me on how he had tried many times to stop smoking but to no avail. I reassured him that it is possible to stop. I taught him some tactics I had read years back for people who want to stop smoking. I, as well, told him of my God that has the ability to take all addictions away if he will just believe and trust in him.
We became friends and he told me I was the first person in 7 years that will not judge him for being bad.
Two days ago, we got talking again and he told me he has not stopped smoking but he smokes like 3 sticks per day as compared to the two packs he was doing years ago.
Bad people know they are bad so find another good name to call them, calling them bad hardens them more.
Change starts from caring and not judging.
Oluwaseun David ADEPOJU