A&E Intervention Alum Commits Suicide


It wouldn't be fair to single out one tragedy and define an entire movement by it - so don't get me wrong, that's not what I'm trying to do here.  But the fact is that I come into contact with people every day who've been rendered totally helpless and hopeless by the recovery culture.  Certainly, everyone who undergoes an intervention and treatment on the A&E network's popular television show Intervention doesn't commit suicide, but this guy in the video below did, and maybe we should think … [Read more...]

World Series Baseball, Pain Medication, Addiction Falsehoods, And Existential Questions…


A story appearing in AOL's World Series baseball coverage about a popular Rangers player titled Aching Addict: Josh Hamilton cautious with pills, injections, opens thusly: If you're an addict, you probably understand how there is so much more history behind the needle that might slide into Josh Hamilton's injured groin muscle, or the pills he might gulp down to ward off the pain. If you have an addict in your life, you probably cringe when you hear about these needles or these pills, because … [Read more...]

Ending Your Desire to Use is a Myth?


I love recovery myths. I spend a lot of time trying to bust them through my writing here, which is why this video piqued my interest: This is Justin Hewitt, the manager of Transcend Sober Living in LA.  He seems nice enough, and from listening to his vlog, I'd say it sounds like he's made some important life changes.  Kudos to that.  But it's telling that the first point he cites of why his life is better now is simply the absence of a negative - that he's not in jail anymore.   This … [Read more...]

Top Ten Ways To Stay Addicted


Here's a helpful list of ways to make sure you never solve your substance use problem. 1) Believe that you are powerless over drugs and alcohol. 2) Kick things off with 90 days or more in rehab, so you can get used to being there. 3) Think of all the things that will trigger you to use drugs again, and keep an eye out for them. 4) Make a plan on how to deal with your next slip or relapse. 5) Commiserate with others about how great drugs are and how much you miss getting high. 6) Don't try … [Read more...]

My Poster-Boy

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A few people have suggested that I am holding up Charlie Sheen as a "poster-boy" for my cause.  Yes, I've been talking about his saga quite a bit, and yes I've been cheering him on in spreading the word about the problems with the 12-steps and treatment, but I must be clear that I am not holding him up as a poster-boy for the cause.  There should be no poster boy for the cause. Notice I don't even really hold myself up as a poster-boy for the cause.  I have a lot of personal experience which … [Read more...]

Stop Recovering. Start Living.

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I came up with what I think is a good motto for my way of thinking last year, but I've only used it once or twice.  It's on my coaching page, and I realized people may read it there and be confused, so I figured I'd explain it.  The motto is "Stop Recovering, and Start Living!" You may have noticed from how often I put quotes around the word "recovery" on this site that I don't really like the word.  To someone who's uninitiated into the recovery culture this may seem odd.  You may ask … [Read more...]

The Clean Slate Guide To Denial


I put up a new page in the Myths section of the site, accessible through the menubar.  It's a discussion of the nonsense recovery term "Denial".  Check out it: Denial: The Anti-Concept What you'll learn is that the term "denial" is used so broadly that it has no essential meaning.  Really, denial is a defense mechanism the recovery culture uses to cope with their faulty understanding of addiction, lack of a solution, desire to control people, and inability to discuss substance use rationally … [Read more...]

Charlie Sheen Turns On The Cult – And Feels The Wrath of Alcoholics Anonymous

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The latest news on Charlie Sheen is BIG news.  He has publicly called AA a cult, indicated that it's been screwing up his life for 22 years, and that it has control over his family.  These latest comments have brought things to a true tipping point.  He's being universally attacked as a crazy person for criticizing AA, and no one in the major media seems to have the slightest interest in investigating his claims.  I contend that Sheen's comments are 100% correct. While Sheen is the most … [Read more...]

Dr Drew Has Two and a Half Brain Cells


Charlie Sheen is back in the news, and this time the media seems downright puzzled with his latest comments, they're almost ambivalent about commenting on them.  The stories are a mixed bag, but this seems to be the quote that has most people shocked and appalled: In the interview with former ESPN anchor Patrick, Sheen acknowledged that he's had "some problems lately" and said staying away from crack cocaine is good advice unless a person can "manage it socially."  Asked if he could, Sheen … [Read more...]

Charlie Sheen Case Reveals The True Character of The Recovery Culture

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The news reports on Charlie Sheen's recent exploits make excellent fodder for examining our culture's beliefs about addiction.  They're giving me too many ideas to write about.  For now, I'll focus on the schizophrenic nature of our beliefs.  A report in the Daily News questions the wisdom of Sheen's latest treatment episode, which he will undergo at home rather than at a treatment center: The clearest benefit for a patient receiving rehabilitation treatment at home is that he receives all the … [Read more...]