Interview with a vaper

Tessa Pauls, Features Editor

Right now our generation is struggling with the epidemic of vaping. People that don’t vape can’t understand why someone, especially kids in high school, would start vaping and vapers don’t explain why because they would get in trouble. To provide some insight into why any one, particularly a young person, would ever consider vaping we interviewed one. 

Joe Camel, started vaping in late November of 2018. A senior offered a juul to him, and he said yes because he wanted to impress the senior and feel like he fit in. When asked how it affected his grades, he said, “When I first started I didn’t know how to balance everything and my grades dropped significantly. The problem was I prioritized vaping instead of school.” This struggle of balancing the two lasted for the rest of that school year. 

In late May and early June, he got caught by his parents and his friends parents. After that, the person who was giving him vaping stuff stopped supplying it to him because they didn’t want to get caught themselves. He was basically forced to quit at that point because he had no way to get anything. However 2 months later, in early August he was offered vaping stuff again by someone new. He accepted it because he still wanted to fit in again. 

Now he vapes multiple times a day, and almost all of his friends. He vapes everywhere: his house, school, the bus to and from school, bathrooms, and basically anytime he gets the chance to. 

He recently got caught again by his parents. The people he is friends with has changed since vaping, “The friends that I had before I vaped started drifting away and they started ignoring me, and that was a very painful process.” The people he hangs out with were introduced to him by a person he met in class that vaped.

 When asked why he hasn’t stopped vaping he said, “Mostly because I’m addicted and if I don’t get it taken away I wont stop. Like I need help to stop”. He is embarrassed about vaping, but he says, “I’ve gone a couple days without it and I get a headache that will never go away. I can’t imagine going longer then a day without”. He knows a few of the consequences and that they are bad, but he doesn’t understand what they are or how they happen. He knows people have died from it, but “I think those people died because they were doing an excessive amount. Like a Juul pod a day which isn’t good at all.” It worries him a little, but he thinks he’ll be fine because his body has gotten used to it and he only does 15-20 hits a day. He doesn’t want to think that it will happen to him, but it’s hard not to wonder.

 He definitely sees himself stopping and said, “I like to hope I can stop by the end of senior year, but I hope it’s sooner because I want to get the friends I lost back. I’m also done with hiding things.”