According to Choire Sicha in the NY Observer, this fall there are no less than four (count 'em: 4!) rehab memoirs hitting the bookshelves, all from youngish men with somewhat famous last names and/or connections. All that and the film of RUNNING WITH SCISSORS too.
I can hardly wait...NOT!
Tolstoy famously noted, "All happy families are alike." Here's what I discovered: So are all recovery stories. I came of age--and beyond--surrounded by drunks and drug addicts. Even married one, once upon a time. So I've been to countless Al-Anon meetings and a few AA meetings as well. And every wretched tale I've heard or read goes like this:
- Drunk falls into downward spiral of alcoholic excess, often losing home/job/friends/love of significant other(s).
- Drunk bottoms out, sometimes in a spectacular fashion, almost always in a sordid one.
- Drunk goes through painful drying-out process.
- Drunk rejoins society a new and better, if rather shaky, person.
- End of story, except for those poor souls who lather, rinse & repeat; sometimes more than once.
And another thing: Why are these recovery books all by men?
Way back when AA started, it was thought that women couldn't be alcoholics. We know better now. Are women on the crash-and-burn party circuit not writing tales of speedy redemption? I would hope they'd have the sense not to, but I suspect that for some reason (sexism?), more likely their stories are just not getting picked up for publication. Not that there's anything wrong with that: what goes on in those rooms should stay in those rooms, if only because it's so nauseatingly repetitious. I wish the boys felt the same way, or at least would wait till they had a complete 4th act--or even a 5th or 6th--to share with the world.