Beautiful Boy

I took several books with me on vacation; I read I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron (which I loved – laugh out loud) and The Day I Ate Whatever I Wanted by Elizabeth Berg, both collections of essays for Women Forced To Acknowledge That They’re Getting Older. That’s me. I loved both books – laughed AND cried, and identified with a lot of what I read, including some things that I just anticipate understanding in the next twenty years. Some of my blog buddies ought to read these books. You know who you are.

I read Janet Evanovich’s latest Stephanie Plum novel, and they always make me laugh out loud. They’re good, predictable and easy to digest – sort of like a 3 Musketeers bar. Yum.
By far, the most moving book I read was Beautiful Boy by David Sheff. The story of his son, Nic, and the challenges of parenting through Nic’s drug addiction, this work profoundly impacted me on several levels. Sheff did an outstanding job of relating the heartache and devastation of loving through intense pain; the descriptions of the worst of their times together were gut-wrenching. I gained great insight into the pain of hidden within the families of addicts. I pray that my ability to be more empathetic will grow because of what I experienced as I journeyed through this book.
I highly recommend Beautiful Boy. Your time will not be ill-spent.
Read more about the book here; read about Nic Sheff and his story in his own words here.

David and Nic Sheff; photo from the NYTimes

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5 Comments

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  1. I read Beautiful Boy to help me with some of what I am going through with my son (not as bad as what the author went through but bad enough). I got a lot of insight and it helped me stabilize myself a little bit and realize some things that I needed to understand. One thing I learned in the book is that 10% of the population carries the gene to become addicted. We make our children wear bike helmets, but 10% of children aren’t in bike accidents–why do some people condone drinking and pot in their teenagers when it is ever so much more risky than other things that we protect them from. Just because the kid isn’t driving doesn’t eliminate the risk of addiction. Why would anyone take that risk?

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  2. I do think it’s a chemical switch for some people, otherwise we’d all be addicts. It’s a disease and has to be treated as such. My heart goes out to families struggling to help and love through the heartache.Great book selections Beth. I’ll have to look into all three. :c)

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  3. Seeing as how I got a call today from my son in jail (for drunk and disorderly) maybe I’ll take this one to the beach with me. Argh. Thanks for the recommendation.

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  4. Beth, I saw that book and read a little info about them, then promptly forgot about it. I was afraid to look at it, afraid I’d see written there in black and white what I’d been living the last several years. Though my son is doing MUCH better, I am still afraid the pain and bad memories are too close for me to read this book. But one day, I’d like to and I guess I will have to leave myself a note or put it on a list so I can read it later.

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  5. On a brighter note, I also wanted to get the “I Feel Bad About my Neck” book, so I’ll have to add it to my list as well, and may as well check the other one out, as I may be one of those women you were referring to, and were too polite to call by name!!

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