Everything You Know About Heroin Addiction Is Wrong




Addiction Is Not a 'Hollywood Thing,' It’s a Human Thing

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Editor’s note: The following words, slightly edited, appeared as a status update and tweet in actor Donal Logue’s Facebook and twitter timelines early this morning, in response to the vitriol he’d been reading in the wake of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s untimely death. Logue, whose essay on skin cancer will be published here shortly, has given Everyday Health permission to reprint his words.

To all the clean and sober friends going to bed tonight with another good 24 hours behind them: congrats and big love. To all the people struggling with addiction and alcoholism: hugs and big love to you, too. You'd be surprised by how many have known the struggle you know (all too well) and have lived what you are living and have come out the other side. Life isn't easy. It takes a lot of courage to face it and strength to deal with all the responsibilities we all have: kids, work, life, fears, hopes, dreams. Being clean is a braver, truer way to deal with it (and it still ain't easy.)

Truth is, it's much easier living clean than living in active addiction and alcoholism. Changing circumstances of your life to feed a need, chasing scripts from doctors, wondering how to get rigs, freaking out over a non-returned text to your third-go to dealer- evictions, bankruptcy, alienation from family/kids- loss of driver's license- the constant need for funds to go to what is essentially sh*% being cooked up somewhere for you leads to constant exhaustion of the mind, body and soul.

DRUGS ARE AN AMERICAN EPIDEMIC. Of the tens upon tens of thousands of deaths last year in America from drug abuse- a handful (I can count five, maybe six) were from Hollywood (the latter word used, as it is so often, pejoratively.) Let’s think of addiction in terms of what it actually is: a human plight that afflicts (I guarantee) a bunch of people in your town and extended families, and again (I guarantee) most of them were not involved in entertainment.

We lost a man who was off-the-scales good at what he did. I did not know him well. I had a good hang session with him some years back on the end of his block. Good dude, would have been your friend in high school, before he pursued his dream and had the talent to ride to the top. Demonizing an entire profession because of one man's demons only makes the pain worse for those whom drugs really destroys: children, families.

I've seen some odd vitriol in the wake of yesterday's news. Maybe that's because addiction has ravaged someone close to the vitriol spewers by proxy. There is help, too, for those close to loved ones who can't stop using. If you are using, you can stop. You can make a decision, and minute by minute you stick with it, and before you know it you have a whole new life where you are no longer owned by this sh*% cooked up somewhere with the full intent of getting to you and f*&king up your life.

Love to those who have made it through, in towns, in the country, in cities, and love to those suffering, you are not alone. You can pick a moment to change. Literally a moment.

For me, the day I stopped being an addict, there was nothing earth-shattering about the moment.  I simply glanced up at a clock. I was literally sick and tired of being sick and tired, and I glanced up at a clock- 11:32 PM on May 3rd 1991- wild- and while it was minute by minute at first, hours turned into days and then years.

Moral finger wagging at such a time--at any time--is not the answer. I just wanted to let you know (and to remind myself) that we are not alone. There is a way out of addiction, just as there is a proper way to mourn and honor our artists, however they died, whatever demons may have haunted them.

Donal Logue is an award-winning film and television actor, appearing most recently in Coppers, Sons of Anarchy, and Vikings, which begins its second season at the end of this month. He is also a trucker and now novelist, whose first novel, Agua, will be released by Harper Collins later this year.

Last Updated:2/3/2014
Important:The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not Everyday Health.
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Date: 09.12.2018, 23:36 / Views: 95385