We all know how difficult it is for a junkie to admit to being sick or to cry out for help.
Over the past few weeks, I struggled to admit to myself, let alone anyone else, that I am a hopeless druggie in desperate need of help.
For almost 25 years now, I have been hooked on the most potent drug the world has ever known. It is also the most widely used.
It's not easy to shake off this addiction. And the damage to one's health is so spectacularly brilliant, it flies in the face of medical common sense.
It shrivels your balls, making you less of a man. For women? I'd rather not say.
Every time you take a single dose, your entire body and all your organs go into shock.
Every hit contains about 4000 poisonous substances, including rat poison, giving off bad breath and making your heart work overtime.
These deadly chemicals can also make you blind because they attack the macula, which is the most sensitive part of of the retina.
About shrinking balls, I don't know yet. But I find it increasingly difficult to read the fine print in contracts. No wonder I have been a sucker for salesmen for some time now.
And we are not done yet. I'm also a candidate for lung, throat and mouth cancer and my mortality risk in these categories is 20 to 30 times greater than non-addicts.
Just 10 minutes of indulging in my drug of choice and my oxygen supply decreases for about an hour.
I'm robbing my skin of collagen which keeps the skin elastic, and I know I will develop very deep wrinkles and age dangerously faster.
Should I break my leg or any part of my body, the healing process will be indefinitely delayed because of the restriction of blood flow.
Oh, yeah, the dangers of tobacco are endless. For the past few weeks I have enrolled myself in an expensive therapy programme, which I honestly believe will help rid me of my demons, but believe me, it's tough going.
What galls me is the fact that it was so easy to start. As a teenage schoolboy, I saw my peers doing it and I thought they were so cool.
I was also seduced by expensive radio advertisements that punted the supposed glamour of smoking.
One such advert is burnt in my memory: Rich choice tobacco and the miracle filter makes Peter Stuyvesant the international passport to smoking pleasure .
Quit if you can still breathe. If you haven't started - don't.