Family Drama and Addiction -- we’re combining these two categories because they often seem to go together. Like spiked eggnog and gingerbread cookies. Are your family holidays full of this kind of drama? We want to know.
It had been clear to me for a while that Ellen was greedy. That wasn’t the whole truth, though. She also loved toying with people. My sister wasn’t doing this just for the money. She wanted the thrill of stealing something, and of tricking people into giving it to her so that she could laugh at their gullibility and feel really smart. She was playing a game, we were the pawns and she found it exhilarating.
By Shar Khursigara
On the day of my wedding, which went by a blur, one thing stood out. D, the best man and J’s best friend for many years, told me I looked beautiful. Lots of people had told me I looked beautiful that day, but when D said it, I remember feeling … well, beautiful. A photo was taken a few moments after he said it, and when I looked back at that photo after the wedding, I felt amazing/terrible feelings of fondness/guilt for thinking what a handsome couple we’d have made, in some bizarro universe where D was the groom and J the best man.
By Elisabeth Harker
In July of 2011, I was making plans for my first trip back to the States in three years. At this time, I started to get e-mails from my aunt telling me that my dad was not doing well. One day I was told that if he gave up drinking he might have two years to live, the next he was in rehab and then just a couple of weeks later the news was that he’d gone on a drinking binge and was in the hospital.
By Vanessa Formato
I was a wild, confused 13, stubborn and hurt and lonely. Lying had become a part of me I just could not shake. I lied to my mother when she found out about just one of dozens of men I was having cyber and phone sex with. I lied to strange men and told them I was older. I lied to myself for years that I was the creep. I lied, I lied, I lied.
By Talena Lydia
My drugs of choice were alcohol and benzos (an intensely dangerous combination, of which I was sadly aware). I now refer to my actions as a passive suicide. I lasted about 4 days into the new semester before I dropped all my classes and decided to devote my life to “partying.” And, by this point, partying just meant hysterically crying as I watched "Legally Blonde" on repeat with Stella.
By Jessie M.
I wish I could count the number of times I blacked out from binge drinking, the way I can still count my lovers, but I can’t. I’m scared some blackouts were so bad I can’t remember anything about them at all, as if I’ve been alive 10,635 days and only 10,629 nights. Recently, I asked my therapist why I blacked out so much, when my friends often drank much more than I did. She told me some people are more inclined to black out than others -- their brains are just set up that way. My brain was configured that way.
By Lauren Paul
In the early years, the weight difference between the two of us was only about 20 or 25 pounds, making her significantly underweight and me healthy-thin. And it was more difficult to see the size difference between us because she tended to wear oversized castoffs, like my father’s sweaters from college. (It’s not that difficult to look better than someone who wears men’s clothing from the 1950s.)
Oh, but our mother knew the score, always encouraging her to eat and me not to. When we were kids, she always insisted my sister get a milkshake with her Happy Meal on our once-or-twice-yearly trips to McDonalds. Needless to say, she did not offer to get me a milkshake or a sundae.
Jack* and I met one summer several years ago. We seemed to have so much in common, most importantly music. He was quick to tell me how beautiful I was, that no one understood him like I did. He spilled all of his secrets to me, including his two year stay in a home for troubled teens for severe depression. I would later discover this "home" was actually a mental hospital for extremely disturbed individuals.