When I was working in Frankfurt there was two Italian guys living in the guest house (apartment) who I would talk to and hang out with while I was there. One of them asked me what another word was for drunk. He said "drunk" didn't sound quite right. So I listed: inebriated, sloshed, plastered, smashed… and he stopped me, "Yeah, SMASHED thats good!"

My Chicago friend Sarah wrote a short review of the book Smashed: Story of a Drunken Girlhood. I have read a few books on the topic of alcoholism and really enjoyed them all (although the stories are quite intense.) I love reading memoirs and among them Dry and A Million Little Pieces have been great reads.

I was there when a close friend of mine took the first steps and went to Alcoholics Anonymous. I went with her (almost) ever week for six months. I tried going to Al-Anon. I have other close friends who are "functional alcoholics" and this makes me very sad.

Understanding addiction is almost impossible unless you have gone through it yourself. This is why most staff at recovery clinics are also recovering alcohol or drug users. Trying to explain addiction is like trying to convince an agnostic that God exists. I have total respect and encouragement for those who stay clean and don't relapse.  It really is one-day-at-a-time. 

I'm at a loss for words.  This topic makes me sad.