Help, I'm a Closet Vaper!
Help, I'm a Closet Vaper!
So, from the title, we're betting you'll know what this is about. We’re positive that a bunch of our fellow vapers out there can relate.
A ‘closet vaper’ is a person who vapes doesn’t really talk about their habit and often finds themselves sneaking off to vape in private because it just makes life easier.
It’s like someone hiding a smoking habit, since smoking in many parts of society today makes you into something of a social pariah. But since smoking and vaping are decidedly not the same thing, it really pains us to know vapers feel a need to hide it. That’s because vaping is widely acknowledged as being less harmful than smoking, and it doesn’t stink like analog cigarettes do.
Also, if you’re like us you're grateful for vaping, because it allowed you to switch from combustible cigarettes to something better.
For all these reasons, we understand why you might not be open about your vaping, but we hope you can offer some ways to let the people who matter most in your life know about it.
Reasons for Hiding Your Vaping
You might be tight-lipped about being a vaper due to all the news about youth vaping being on the rise. With the problem being labeled an ‘epidemic’ by the federal government and some companies facing allegations of purposefully marketing to teens, maybe the last thing you want is your friends to see you puffing on one of those products.
Maybe you’re a mom or a dad, or maybe even a grandparent, and you really don’t feel comfortable having your own kids seeing you vaping because you want to set a good example for them.
Another reason you may feel funny letting people know you vape is because of the pervasive stereotypes surrounding "dudebros" blowing "fat clouds" (see “Vape god Tommy Smokes” for the most recent bad example).
Or maybe you’re a woman and it seems like such a male-dominated hobby with no place for you.
Or maybe you think some people associate it with other substances besides nicotine even though that’s not your thing.
Or maybe it’s because some people don't know what vaping actually is, and then they look at you funny and ask you questions ...
(By the way, not that you care what we think, but if you actually don’t think it’s anybody’s business that you vape, we support that, too. What you do is your business.)
However, if you actually want to be open about it, read on.
Here are some telltale signs of being a secret vaper.
Signs You’re a Closet Vaper
You Don’t Take Your Vape Out
Your vape pen never leaves the confines of your domicile or car. You simply don't bring it to work, on outings or anywhere you aren't alone, with four walls around you.
You Were Hush-Hush About Quitting Smoking
Maybe you told a few select people you were planning to trade in cigarettes for vaping. Or maybe you mentioned it once and then never brought it up again. Why? It could be because you were just plain worried that you wouldn’t want to stay away from cigarettes. Or because a lot of people don’t consider switching to vaping as a success but a mere substitution.
You’re Embarrassed To Vape
You feel like vaping has a bad name because of the stereotypical vape bro and you don’t want to be associated with that guy, who, by the way, is cool and all, but is actually only one facet of the diverse community of vapers.
You Stick to Tobacco Flavors
If you stick to traditional tobacco or menthol flavors, that could also be a sign of a closet vaper. By not going into the quote-unquote ‘fruity, candy craze’, you deem yourself as more traditional and old-school and not ‘one of those vapers’.
You Don’t Speak Up About Vaping
When the topic of vaping comes up you remain suspiciously silent. Maybe it's because you don't want people to know that you're an advocate for vaping in any way, shape or form. By not participating, you don’t oust yourself, and thus, your secret is safe.
Despite some negative stereotypes and the negative news about vaping in modern pop culture, there's nothing to be ashamed about when it comes to vaping. Vaping is a lot more commonplace and socially accepted then one may believe. Once you recognize you are hiding you habit and you don’t want to anymore, try these steps to get yourself out of it.
Bring Your Vape
Bring your vape when you're about to pack your bag. Bring it when you think you might want to vape. Even bring your vape when you know for a fact you're definitely not going to vape. Actually having it on your person will help you feel more comfortable displaying it or talking about it and start discussions with your friends if the need arose.
Know Both Sides of The Argument
A wise man once said ‘knowledge is power’. That man was Francis Bacon.
Bacon aside, knowing both sides of the argument, especially knowing why people may be against vaping is good to come from an understanding perspective and to provide greater insight into the subject at hand, including teen vaping.
First off, you should understand how nicotine is involved and used in vaping products in comparison to smoking. You should also be prepared to explain why you believe vaping is the right path for you backed up with facts, not feelings. You can even go into detail as to how hard it was to transition from smoking to vaping due to symptoms such as dizziness from the increase in oxygen flowing to your brain, shakes from the lower amount of nicotine in your system, and headaches from withdrawals because guess what? If it was the same, there’d be no withdrawals. Right?
You Are a Spokesperson of the Vape Community
Just like how everyone is in some way, shape or form an influencer, you are in some capacity acting as a spokesperson for vaping when you vape. But that doesn’t mean you blow up your friends’ feeds with your clouds or joke about being the personal ‘air refresher’ at the next dine-in pub.
Every choice you make does reflect your position as a member of the community. If you don’t want your friends to believe vapers are ‘smoke snobs’, you can prove them wrong by your actions and voicing your thoughts and opinions. It doesn’t mean to have to be a saint, but in essence don’t be a jerk.
Consider that every time someone sees you vaping, it's an opportunity for them to make a silent judgment. So don't go blowing clouds into other people's personal space, or fog up an indoor room that isn't a vape shop or vape convention. Common courtesy goes a long way, and the more people that see you vaping responsibly, the easier it is for them to reflect positively on vaping in general.
Being Part of a Community Helps
And remember, just like there are many ways to vape and many types of vape lifestyles, there's probably a vaping community in your area or digital space. Especially in metropolitan areas, vape communities often conduct meet and greets in physical spaces as well.
Even if you can’t discuss vaping topics with your friends, you can interact with other peers to expand your social circle. You can also find vape squads via social media, Facebook pages, and using event sites like Eventbrite to follow brands and groups directly.
(Note: One of our writers also said this was her favorite way to get free products. It’s also a great icebreaker to tell people where the free products are.)
With all of this in mind, that closet seems ridiculous, doesn’t it?
In a time where our personal lives are like walking billboards on social media, with every purchase being an addition to our identity, we've become ever more aware of our association with brands, messages, and people.
But vaping isn’t a ‘brand’ that should keep you out of sight, out of mind. Being mindful of your place in the vaping community, and being open about it are the best first steps out of the closet.