Why didn’t you tell me that a long time ago?

Tonight’s featured speaker was a 50-something woman who reclaimed her sobriety and her life among the gays at AA meetings in West Hollywood.  She started life as a wild child from the very beginning.  She had all sorts of issues early on, including anxiety and depression, and she said that she experienced things that would make anyone want to ‘check out’.  It was not at all clear what could have been, however.  Her mother was a little crazy, but likeable, and her father was a very responsible man, whom she appreciates much more now after he is gone (he died when she was a teenager). Continue reading Why didn’t you tell me that a long time ago?

Addiction Fiction

Tonight’s featured ‘alcoholic and addict’ at gay Hollywood AA was a handsome 40-something working actor.  Incredibly he has been out for less than 10 years.  Because of shame and guilt which he medicated with alcohol and other drugs, he played a straight man through his mid 30’s, while living a secret life at night hooking up with guys on drug fueled sexcapades.

He started drinking as a college student, the normal amount – no more or less than other guys.  Of course, this is one of the first signs of the hapless alcoholic.  It was all downhill from there.   Continue reading Addiction Fiction

Bill W Would be Proud

At today’s gay Hollywood meeting, we heard from a youngish handsome mixed-race speaker.  He grew up with an alcoholic father who would come home late at night, sometimes quietly, and sometimes very loudly.  His parents would argue in the kitchen as dishes crashed in the background.  Where were you?  Who were you with?  The screaming would continue until the wee hours of the morning. Continue reading Bill W Would be Proud

Addiction Logic

Tonight’s featured speaker at our gay meeting in Hollywood was a middle-aged man (like me) who spoke about his battle with alcoholism and the importance of the program.  His father was an alcoholic, and would use alcohol to create a buffer around himself, to protect himself from his rage-aholic wife.  He would sit in his favorite chair, holding his drink up at chest level, watching his wife bemusedly as she yelled at him for various things (for being drunk all the time, not having enough money, neglecting the children, etc. etc).  He would follow each of her rants with a drunken drawl: “OK and you can just go f–k yourself.” And then he would take another sip.

Our speaker really admired his father’s equanimity in the face of the shrew’s endless abuse.   Continue reading Addiction Logic

Candy Addiction and the Power of Suggestion

Let’s do an experiment.  Take two groups of children.  To one group you instruct:

Children, be careful around candy.  Some people get addicted to candy.  Here’s what happens: They start eating it and things seem ok at first, but after some time they find that they are unable to stop.  Then, they eat all the candy, even though they are getting really fat and desperately want to stop.  Even though they may not even really like the taste of the candy!  For these children, the only solution is to completely ban candy from their lives.  Otherwise they may succumb to the addiction again.  It is a life-long struggle, although there are treatment programs for it.

Continue reading Candy Addiction and the Power of Suggestion

Yawny Time

Lately I’ve been participating more in meetings (of course, declaring that I am not an alcoholic).  I have not received any open criticism.  It actually has been a good experience.  I can totally relate to a lot of what other people are saying, and I just go with it.  I keep my shares short and acknowledge both the similarities and differences with others.

Tonight I was invited to participate by reciting one of the many canonical passages from the Big Book.   Continue reading Yawny Time

Hollywood Special

As you know from reading this blog, there are two types of addicts: the brainwashed and the liars.  At today’s meeting in Hollywood we were privileged to hear from both.

Our featured speaker was a lovely woman who started drinking as a young lady after getting a job as a waitress at a bar.  Even though she was a shy and delicate girl, there was something about being at the bar that made her comfortable.  She felt at home with the alcoholics, whose ranks she soon joined.  She spent the next 10 years blackout drinking. Continue reading Hollywood Special

The Little Psychopath Could: How the Addiction Myth creates new Drug Addicts

Addiction is a terrible thing. The addict is desperate for drugs and does terrible things to get them. Once he has them he doesn’t give a damn about anyone or anything.  It is as if his soul is possessed by the devil. Of course, we are not religious and we don’t believe that literally. There is a scientific explanation for why the addict acts with such malice. His goal is not to hurt people; he is lying and cheating and stealing to get the drug. Although the child seems like a demon, he is actually in the throes of a medical disease and must be dealt with compassionately. In fact, entire industries were created to treat and research this disease. If you want to find a rehab, there are many. It’s a tough disease, but it can be treated. Never cured, of course, but treated. And people get better.
Continue reading The Little Psychopath Could: How the Addiction Myth creates new Drug Addicts

A Conversation with UCLA Addictions Expert Dr. Adi Jaffe

Dr. Adi Jaffe is an up-and-coming expert on addiction (drugs, sex, gambling, you-name-it).   As an expert on addiction, he knows more than most: he has first-hand experience.  He suffered for many years from a raging meth addiction, which he eventually had to support the only way he could – by selling drugs and skimming off some for himself.  He was arrested several times, risking everything including his life and freedom, just for a hit of meth.  After many desperate attempts to stop, he realized that he would “end up either dead or in jail or homeless”.  He checked himself into rehab and finally broke the addiction.  It was not easy!  Amazingly, he pulled the pieces of his life back together.  He went back to school, and did extremely well.  Using skills developed during his successful drug business, he did a ‘full court press’ on UCLA and was admitted to their prestigious PhD program.  UCLA is the epicenter of the scientific study of  “Addiction Research”, and Dr. Jaffe is now a scion of the emerging field.    http://www.uclaisap.org/  He also maintains his own web site All About Addiction in which he writes a blog and promotes rehabs that have unfilled beds. Continue reading A Conversation with UCLA Addictions Expert Dr. Adi Jaffe

Why does every best seller on addiction turn out to be fake?

All of the best-selling accounts of addiction turn out to be fakes.  This is true of James Frey’s A Million Little Pieces, The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, and Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey through his Son’s Addiction by David Sheff.  Why is that?  If you read this site, you already know the answer: because addiction is a myth, and therefore any account of it must be fictional or fraudulent.
Continue reading Why does every best seller on addiction turn out to be fake?

Addict Science

There is a multi-billion dollar medical industry dedicated to studying the science of ‘addiction’.  However, this is an exercise in futility.  There is no such thing as addiction (defined as an uncontrollable compulsion to drink/drug).  All they can show is that parts of the brain light up when people who use drugs see pictures of them, e.g. cocaine, etc.  Surprise, surprise!  I’m sure my brain would light up when I see a donut.  But I’m not addicted to them.  (Well maybe a little.)
Continue reading Addict Science