Why I Appreciate The CVS/pharmacy Decision
By now I’m sure you’ve all heard the news–CVS/pharmacy has decided to stop selling tobacco products by October 1 of this year.
As someone who is interested in promoting health and fitness, this was welcome news to me. As someone who bought her first pack of cigarettes at her neighborhood CVS store, the news hit close to home.
That’s right. I used to smoke. Shudder!
I bought my first pack of cigarettes when I was 14 or 15, at a CVS that was about two blocks from my house (although it might have still been a Peoples back then). I remember being worried that I would be “carded.” I’m pretty sure I bought a menthol flavor, although I can’t remember the brand. Later I switched to Marlboro Lights after hearing that menthol “made holes in your lungs”–never mind all the other damage smoking any kind of cigarettes does! I smoked throughout the rest of high school and college, but quit cold turkey as soon as I got pregnant with my first child. I’ve never missed smoking and see now what a nasty habit it is, but back then it was part of my struggle to be “cool,” and balance my otherwise goody-goody reputation.
If that neighborhood drugstore never sold cigarettes, would I have still started smoking?
I can’t so “no” for sure, but it was definitely the only convenient place for me to get them. Not only was it within walking distance from my house, but I could legitimize my “errand” by buying something else from the vast array of candy, magazines, and personal items that they also sold. Of course, cigarettes were much cheaper back then. I’m not sure I would have spent my hard-earned baby-sitting money on a pack of smokes at today’s prices, but if that drugstore didn’t sell them, I wouldn’t have even faced that dilemma.
I know the CVS/pharmacy decision probably won’t make anyone quit smoking–nicotine is too addictive to be thwarted by mere inconvenience–but maybe it will prevent a teenager like me from buying her first pack of cigarettes.
For that reason, I am grateful for the CVS/pharamcy decision to stop selling tobacco products, and I challenge other drugstores to follow their lead.