Tag Archives: addiction

The Soapbox: On Sex Addiction, Sex Work & The Wall Street Intern Who Quit Her Job To Pursue Porn

The Soapbox: On Sex Addiction, Sex Work & The Wall Street Intern Who Quit Her Job To Pursue Porn

Last week, a Wall Street intern quit her job to pursue porn. Paige Jennings, who goes by Veronica Vain, was working at an Lazard’s alternative-investments marketing group in New York when she “quit [Wall Street] before it fired me” (according to her Twitter page) after it was discovered she was tweeting nude selfies from inside the bathroom of Lazard’s offices.

I worked in the sex industry on and off through college as a stripper, and then later for a stint as a call girl, selling myself as a non pro on Craigslist and performing what amounted to “the Girlfriend Experience.” When I lost my job as a public school teacher after it was discovered I was writing and speaking openly about my past, I argued — as Jennings does so articulately in this interview — that sexy and serious needn’t be mutually exclusive, and that women have the right to do what they want with their bodies, and not be shamed for the choices they make.

My participation in the sex industry was my choice— and I defend a woman’s right to make that choice. That said, I think it’s fair to critically examine people’s choices, just as I’ve learned to critically examine my own. Keep reading »

The Soapbox: Railing Against AA Does A Disservice To Those Trying To Get Sober

The Soapbox: Railing Against AA Does A Disservice To Those Trying To Get Sober

This post was originally published on After Party Chat and republished with permission.

We’ve all got at least one Facebook friend who just can’t stand Alcoholics Anonymous and needs to let the world know it every chance that they get. I usually politely ignore them. But the latest anti-AA screed to show up in my newsfeed was too irritating to ignore.

First off, let me start by saying that I’m not a member of AA, lest my opinion be dismissed as coming from a member of “the AA cult.” Have I been to meetings? Yes. Tons of them. Do I attend meetings today? No, I don’t. At one point I attended regularly, and it helped me. At a certain point,  it no longer helped me and so I stopped. Simple as that. Keep reading »

You’re An Instagram Addict, But It’s Not Your Fault

Instagram

We all know the compulsive itch to check Instagram at the most inopportune of moments (or worse, in our actual free time when we could be doing so many things that are actually constructive). Nir Eyal, author of Hooked: How To Build Habit-Forming Products, recently sat down with Business Insider to explain why the app is so damn addictive. If you can’t tell by the title of his book, the factors are pretty bleak, and were definitely strategized in some boardroom long before you downloaded the app. Keep reading »

Someone Got Google Glass Addiction And Had Real Withdrawal Symptoms

I was completely prepared to laugh at the idea that someone became genuinely addicted to Google Glass, but then I found out that the guy was being treated for alcohol addiction when his doctors found out he was also having symptoms of Google Glass addiction and it didn’t seem quite right to be amused anymore.

Anyway, this is a real thing: When you use technology constantly, your brain gets used to the neurological reward of using that technology and adapts to its availability. If you stop using it, you can go through withdrawal symptoms. This patient kept involuntarily tapping his right temple and became irritable and argumentative after having to surrender his electronics in order to go through treatment for alcohol addiction. He apparently also had dreams in which he saw through the perspective of wearing Google Glass. He’d worn the glasses all day except for sleeping and washing. Keep reading »

Texas Governor Rick Perry Compares Homosexuality To Alcoholism

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The Texas Republican Convention recently endorsed in its platform so-called “gay reparative therapy,” widely considered to be junk science by the medical community. While speaking in San Francisco last night, Texas Governor Rick Perry, a Republican, is doubling down on statements that being gay is a “lifestyle choice” and compared being actively gay to being an alcoholic.

It’s not the most batshit crazy comparison to make, actually, but it is predicated on the batshit crazy belief that homosexuality is something a person should just, like, suppress Keep reading »

Frisky Q&A: Drunk Mom Author Jowita Bydlowska On Alcoholism, Parenthood & Writing

drunk mom jowita bydlowska

Motherhood. We all have a vision in mind of what it’s supposed to look like: warm, nurturing, saccharine, even beatific. Even the messier versions we allow — frazzled new parent anxiety, daylight zombies — still position the mother as with-it and in control. But what about the mothers who are anything but in control? What about the mothers who have an addiction in control of them?

Jowita Bydlowska is the author of a searing memoir, Drunk Mom, about her 11-month relapse into alcoholism after her son’s birth. A sober alcoholic, Bydlowska toasted her son’s birth with a glass of champagne. Then she began drinking regularly in the overwhelming new days of parenthood. At first her relapse was easy to hide, especially home alone on maternity leave with a newborn. But soon, the addiction metastasized into full-blown alcoholism once again, causing her to make dangerous decisions about her own and her baby’s safety and shrouding her relationship with her baby’s father in lies. When she finally makes it to rehab, the reader is relieved everyone is still alive.

Drunk Mom, which will be published in America on May 27th, is a discomforting read. It’s bare-naked honesty about addiction and families will make a lot of people uncomfortable, especially those with idealized versions of what motherhood and womanhood “should” mean. It’s by far one of the best memoirs that I’ve ever read (and yes, I’m including Wild in that) both for it’s candor and bravery and for her narration.  I understand addiction all the better with once-again-sober Jowita Bydlowska as the Charon to this Hades, our guide to the underworld.

I called Bydlowska in Canada where she lives with her now-five-year-old son.

Keep reading »

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