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 »
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.
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In high school, I fell for a guy named Opie. That was not his given name but a nickname he had acquired along the way. I would have asked from where it had come, but I never found the necessary strength to even talk to him, let alone inquire about the particulars of his life. I was a 16-year-old magenta-haired dork who hung around the art studios both before and after school. I was in no position to start conversations with Kurt Cobain look-a-likes who rocked the same greasy locks and dresses that only the ’90s permitted without too many batted eyelashes.
Opie embodied that “fuck you, I won’t do what you tell me” mentality that I craved in a partner. I longed for a tortured soul, someone who was messed up enough that only drugs and alcohol seemed like the cure for the ailments in their world. In my naïve brain, I was the one who could save them, me and only me. From what I heard, after he left school, Opie got a girl pregnant and had his fair share of struggles with substance abuse. As for where he is now, I have no idea. Like I said, it was the ’90s, heroin chic was in the air and in the pages of Vogue, drug use was glamorized, and in all my sheltered cluelessness about the world, a death that resulted from substance abuse was a badge of a life lived to the extreme. I roll my eyes now at how both ridiculous and insulting that thought is to those who know the very dark side of drug and alcohol addiction, both personally and as an outsider looking in at a loved one. Keep reading »
At the age of 45, Lacey Wildd is proud to be plastic. The former showgirl had her first breast augmentation 20 years ago and has increased her bust size far beyond what would be considered normal. Last year, she wore a Size MMM bra, but she contemplates going up to a Size QQQ! Read more on Huffington Post…
While people may admit to having struggles in their relationships, including difficulty with intimacy, it is sometimes hard to admit that you struggle with love addiction. Learn how to recognizing the signs of love addiction and how to love yourself first on Your Tango…
The holidays remind us of family get-togethers sharing food, laughter and bonding. But if you are a food addict, the holidays may be one big, guilt-ridden binge. Food addicts think about food and have memories of food too, but they will most likely be linked with memories of hiding it, being punished by withdrawal of food, or being abandoned from loving relationships and using eating as a means of comfort. With all of these complicated issues surrounding the act of eating, it’s no wonder the holidays are so stressful for people who struggle with food addictions. The frenzy and excitement brings stress, and food addicts comfort and calm their stress with food. How can you help if you are addicted, married to or know a food addict during the holidays? Click her to read an expert’s advice on Your Tango…
Before Tiger Woods gave his celebrity endorsement to sex addiction, we debated whether it’s an easy excuse or a mental health issue. But now it seems more people are treating it as a serious condition. Sex addiction has gone mainstream in movies like “Shame” and now “Thanks For Sharing,” out today.
We already took a look inside sex rehab clinics to find out what to expect when you’re reforming, but here are seven facts about sex addiction you might not have been aware of already. Read more at Tres Sugar…
We all though about it at one point or another. Okay, I did. Surely, Beanie Babies will be worth millions someday! Don’t you dare cut off that heart-shaped Ty tag! You could sell Patti the Platypus on eBay for probably thousands of dollars by 2010.
Unfortunately, such days have yet to come. Despite this disappointment, Chris Robinson’s family is instead seeking comfort in the knowledge that when the day comes when Beanie Babies make their comeback — and that day will come, dammit! — they’ll be prepared to cash in. Over the years, the Robinson family, primarily driven by Chris’s father, has collected between 15,000 and 20,000 Beanie Babies in the hopes that these toys would make nice college tuition funds for their five kids. This short documentary, by Chris Robinson himself, called “Bankrupt By Beanies,” is kind of cute but also sort of sad. Collecting Beanie Babies turned into an obsession for this man, but also proved to be a source of bonding for the family. And who knows, maybe some day Beanie Babies will get their second coming and the Robinsons will emerge victorious. [Boing Boing]
Last week, the controversial professor, feminist blogger and personal essayist Hugo Schwyzer announced on his blog, in an interview with NYmag.com and again in LA Weekly that he was retiring his notorious public persona and quitting the internet for good (or— for the time being, he corrected himself some days later in yet another goodbye). Maybe you don’t know or care who this person is and that is just as well. He is a semi-big deal in the feminist blogosphere in the way that Serge Haroche is probably (hopefully) an even bigger deal among mathy-type people (he won the Noble Prize in Physics in 2012, according to this random website I found when I Googled “Nobel Prize winners”). And maybe we should all know more about Serge Haroche. But here we are talking about Hugo. (For a complete list of criticisms of Hugo’s work, you can go here. Or here. Yes, there are entire websites created for the sole purpose of criticizing this man and his work.) [Note: A few of Schwyzer's pieces on The Good Men Project were crossposted on The Frisky a few years ago.]
I can’t help it. Honestly, I’m kind of obsessed with him. As a freelance writer as well as a writing instructor — I teach courses in memoir, personal essay and opinion writing, the genres that both Hugo and I write — this whole brouhaha is pushing all my buttons. Some people are taking a certain joy in this character’s downfall — which I feel is mean but, yes, a little tempting. Like many, for me, the redemptive narrative of Hugo Schwyzer always rang less than true. Keep reading »