Look, this might sound terrible, but I’ve got to say it: this time-lapse video of a homeless U.S. Army veteran’s voluntary aesthetic transformation makes the case for vanity if there ever was one. Jim Wolf has struggled with alcoholism since leaving the service and has found himself, like many others like him, without a home. This is where Dégagé Ministries of Grand Rapids, MI comes in. The church-funded non-profit shelter for the homeless and disadvantaged collaborated with Design 1 Salon & Spa and Rob Bliss Creative to clean Jim up real nice and show people — and most of all, Jim — that beneath the scruff and the patina of rough living, he is still a respectable man deserving of a better life. With a shave, a haircut (and color!), and a sharp new suit, Jim liked what he saw when he looked in the mirror. And you know what he did? Post-makeover, he started attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings for the first time ever, and he’s now scheduled to move in to his own housing. Looking good isn’t always enough to make you feel good, but sometimes, when you’re at your lowest point, it can be the first step to lifting your spirits and reminding you of your own worth. [Buzzfeed]
Tag Archives: alcoholism
How do I put this in a way that won’t lead my coworkers and family to stage an intervention? I am a functioning wino, by which I mean I drink a lot of wine, but I’m always on time for work, rarely get wasted or have drunken outbursts, and smell just fine, thank you. How much wine do I drink? LOL I’m not telling you because I don’t necessarily know that I could quantify it. And I’m not alone! A new study out of Iowa of all places (not the Napa Valley or my apartment?) found that most wine drinkers have no idea how much they’re drinking — or how drunk they are — because they’re just, like, not paying attention I guess? The Des Moines Register reports:
The study, published in Substance Use and Misuse, found that participants poured 12 percent more wine into a wide glass than a narrow glass. They also poured 12 percent more wine into a glass they were holding, versus one placed on a table. Color contrast affected pours, too. Participants over-poured white wine into a clear glass by 10 percent. There was less over-pouring when the wine was red.
- Fresh out of her sixth visit to rehab, Lindsay Lohan confessed to Oprah on “Oprah’s Next Chapter” — which aired last night — that she feels she has finally hit rock bottom and will stay sober. She confessed she is addicted to alcohol and has only taken cocaine “10 to 15 times.” Oprah also wisely suggested LiLo might be addicted to “chaos” as well. You think?! [Huffington Post]
- A South African court indicted Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius on charges of premeditated murder of his girlfriend, Reeve Steenkamp. Pistorius shot the model and reality star as she cowered behind the door in a bathroom in his home on Valentine’s Day; he claims he mistakenly thought she was an intruder. The case will go to trial in March 2014. [People]
- Fox picked up one of Tina Fey’s two new comedies — the one set at a women’s college which has recently started admitting men. [Variety]
- Prince William has given his first interview since the birth of his and Kate Middleon’s month-old son, George. He said he did indeed change the newborn’s first diaper at the hospital: “I wasn’t allowed to get away with that. I had every midwife staring at me, ‘You do it. You do it.’” [Socialite Life] Keep reading »
Is there a penalty for a woman who breaks through the glass ceiling and, then, from her position of power, admits that she struggled with mental illness in her past?
Yesterday New York City’s Speaker of the City Council and the Democratic candidate for mayor Christine Quinn revealed in the New York Times that she had suffered from bulimia and alcoholism for a good portion of her life. Quinn explained how her mom suffered through breast cancer throughout Quinn’s childhood and after her mom died, binge eating and purging gave her a brief feeling of relief. It was also in college that Quinn binge drank to the point of developing alcoholism. She checked into a rehab center at age 26 and got control of her eating disorder and her problematic drinking; it wasn’t until three years ago that Quinn, who is also the first mayoral candidate to be openly gay, went entirely dry.
Christine Quinn’s admission echoed another powerful woman’s recent decision to go public about a private struggle: “Morning Joe” cohost Mika Brzezinski revealed in MORE magazine that she has suffered from exercise bulimia for many years, meaning that she binges on food and then over-exercises to burn off the calories.
Brzezinski and Quinn aren’t the only two well-known women to admit to mental illness: Carrie Fisher and Catherine Zeta-Jones have both been public about their struggles with bipolar disorder, Lena Dunham talks about her OCD, and plenty of other celebs have been open about their mental health struggles, too. But I suppose that Christine Quinn and Mika Brzezinski fascinate me in particular because they both work in fairly male-dominated fields — the mainstream media and politics — that aren’t known for being warm and fuzzy. Keep reading »
The Soapbox: In Defense Of Brian Presley (Or Why Melissa Stetten Comes Off Like The Jerk For Live-Tweeting Their Conversation)
On a recent red eye from New York to Los Angeles, model Melissa Stetten sat next to actor Brian Presley and live-tweeted their conversation to approximately 30,000 followers. What ensued was little less than the public humiliation of a husband and father for, among other heinous crimes, allegedly flirting with her and having too much to drink.
While we’ve all sat next to that annoying seatmate on a flight who keeps talking when we just want to be left alone, I do not believe that Brian Presley’s behavior warranted such a public flogging. He sounds like a perfectly harmless guy who chatted up a pretty girl.
Stetten, on the other hand, sounds like an arrogant, insensitive twit. She publicly shamed a man for talking to her and mocked a recovering alcoholic during a possible relapse. Keep reading »
- Daniel Radcliffe used to be drunk was filming “Harry Potter” scenes. In the British celeb mag Heat, the sober alcoholic confessed that “I can point to many scenes where I’m just gone. Dead behind the eyes.” Daniel also says he drank “nightly” and was very adept at hiding it. He’s so lucky he got control of his addictions at such a young age. [People]
- Mark Sanchez and Kim Kardashian might be banging each other, even though he’s dating the Victoria’s Secret model Kate Upton. Kimmy denies everything! [PopBytes, Us Weekly]
- And LiLo might be banging the late Dennis Hopper’s cute son, Henry Hopper. They were spotted kissing while buying booze together in Venice Beach. [StarPulse]
- Oh look, 30 gratuitous photos of Cocker Spaniel puppies! [Buzzfeed] Keep reading »
I’m not an addict, and I’m not an alcoholic. But as offensive as this may sound, I sometimes I wish I were, if only so I could have a language and a community to help me deal with what often seem like out of control urges—a structure surrounding me to help me cope with, well, life. But there are no 12-step meetings for people who simply have trouble getting up every day, who feel hollow and weak and unworthy, but who don’t gloss over those feelings with a single, predictable vice. Over the course of my life, I’ve certainly used alcohol, sex, shopping and food to help quell those feelings, and they’ve each worked, in limited doses, but eventually their effects wore off.
The thing is, though, my rock bottom moments don’t revolve around alcohol, though I’ve consumed my share, or drugs (I’ve attempted to smoke pot twice, and basically failed each time); sometimes it’s food, sometimes it’s sex, sometimes it’s shopping, but I fundamentally believe that the core part of me that hates myself in those moments when I’m eating an entire box of cereal, screwing someone I’m not that into, or buying a pair of shoes I don’t need and can’t afford, is the same impulse that drove, say, my father or grandfather to drink (both are recovering alcoholics). Keep reading »
- Amy Winehouse died from over-consumption of alcohol, according to a coroner’s report released today. Amy’s blood alcohol level was four times the legal limit when she died on July 23, so she clearly was struggling with sobriety. The Winehouse family released a statement which reads: ”It is some relief to finally find out what happened to Amy. We understand there was alcohol in her system when she passed away, it is likely a build up of alcohol in her system over a number of days. The court heard that Amy was battling hard to conquer her problems with alcohol and it is a source of great pain to us that she could not win in time. She had started drinking again that week after a period of abstinence.” How terribly sad. RIP, Amy. [TMZ]
- Ryan Gosling and Justin Timberlake once stole a golf cart together on the set of “The Mickey Mouse Club,” which I guess is pretty bad-ass when you’re 12. [Us Weekly]
- I don’t know, zombie Muppets kind of feels wrong. [The Mary Sue] Keep reading »
As Amy Winehouse‘s album Back to Black climbs back onto the charts and whispers begin about a treasure trove of unreleased songs, Winehouse’s family has a hunch about what we might find in her toxicology report—that she died from alcohol withdrawal. They believe that laying off the alcohol cold turkey may be what caused Winehouse’s sudden death last weekend at age 27. A source close to the family explains, “[Amy's father Mitch] said doctors had told Amy to gradually reduce her intake of alcohol and to avoid bingeing at all costs. Amy told him she couldn’t do that. It was all or nothing and she gave up completely. Mitch said the shock of giving up, after everything she had been through over a bad few years, was just too much for her to take. Abstinence gave her body such a fright, they thought it was eventually the cause of her death.”
So what exactly is alcohol withdrawal? And can it kill someone? Keep reading »
“[Alcoholism] was bigger than me. It was definitely going to kill me. I remember sitting on my bed. I swear, I don’t know what death feels like, but I felt like my spirit was trying to leave my body. I really didn’t care about myself. I was borderline suicidal. I was like the walking dead; just smoking and drinking and hanging. I remember saying a prayer: ‘Send me someone to help me.’ … I stopped drinking. It was will power. It was prayer. It was really hard. But, I cared so much about [my now-husband Kendu Isaacs], I didn’t want to be just this alcoholic burden on him. He doesn’t deserve for me to be some slum-bucket alcoholic, and so I took responsibility and I cleaned up, as much as I could. But it was hard.”
—Mary J. Blige tells “Behind The Music” how she felt close to death as an alcoholic and explains how she finally defeated the disease’s hold on her. Since the episode just aired, it’s hard not to view it in light of Amy Winehouse‘s death, especially given that Winehouse died alone in bed. If only she’d been able to turn her addictions around, too. [Huffington Post] Keep reading »