Wilma’s Story

Meet Wilma
Meet Wilma

Wilma can’t point to a specific reason she started smoking cigarettes. Her siblings smoked, and by her early teens she was sneaking cigarettes from her sister — beginning an addiction that would last 30 years.

In her mid-forties, Wilma decided that she needed to stop smoking. After several unsuccessful attempts to quit in the past, Wilma quit for good in 2007. She threw out her lighters and ashtrays and started exercising more. She got advice from her doctor and used a prescription to help. She also got support through an online program. Today, at 49, she enjoys activities — and a lifestyle — she never dreamed of as a smoker.

Wilma’s Videos


Wilma smoked for 30 years before finally quitting in her mid-forties. A nonsmoker since 2007, Wilma is one of the successful quitters sharing their tips on quitting in this commercial from CDC’s Tips From Former Smokers® campaign.

Cessation Tips Ad
You can quit smoking! This inspiring TV ad features Beatrice, James and Wilma — three people who successfully quit smoking after many years. They share their practical tips on how to quit for good in this commercial from CDC’s Tips From Former Smokers® campaign.

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Wilma’s Biography


Wilma can’t point to a specific reason she started smoking cigarettes. Her siblings smoked, and by her early teens she was sneaking cigarettes from her sister — beginning an addiction that would last 30 years. In her mid-forties, Wilma decided that she needed to stop smoking.

Wilma

“I realized I was too young to feel this bad and too old to be messing around with smoking anymore,” she says. After several unsuccessful attempts to quit in the past, Wilma quit for good in 2007. She got advice from her doctor and used a prescription to help. She also got support through an online program. She threw out her lighters and ashtrays and started exercising more.

Today, at 49, she enjoys activities — and a lifestyle — she never dreamed of as a smoker. She is training as a yoga instructor (yoga was one of the exercises that helped her cope with nicotine withdrawal) and for a half marathon. She also eats healthier foods than she did when she smoked.

“Once you quit, it opens up so many possibilities that you don’t see when you are caught up in the addiction,” Wilma says. “I’ll also admit, as a woman, vanity was part of my motivation to quit, too. I want to look as young as I can for as long as I can — and smoking just wasn’t going to help.”

Wilma hopes her story can inspire others to quit and is proud to be a part of the Tips From Former Smokers® campaign. “I want to be an inspiration for others to quit smoking, even if it’s just one person,” she says. “It’s your health.”

Additional Resources


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