“Adding Fire to the Fuel: Challenging Shame and the Stigma of Alcoholism” by Scott Stevens turns the spotlight on some very important, yet lesser known or discussed aspects of alcoholism: Shame and Stigma.
We all know some about recovery and the 12 Steps programme but we probably do not emphasize enough or know about the many ways that society and its attitudes prevent people from seeking recovery.
Be that the advertising industry that tempts people into drinking and glorifies it, or the shame of drinking or not-drinking. Blaming and prejudices.
In this brilliantly written book so much is said that rings true. I am an ex-smoker and I feel that Stevens does to alcoholism what Alan Carr did to smokers: Intellectualising the problem, educating people and using statistical data to prove his points.
I personally know of two people whose lives have been changed by Stevens’ books, one of which even has been in direct contact with the author.
Read this book, for it will make you understand more about a very common problem that is often brushed under the carpet. Here is a man who lived and survived the problem. This intellectual dissection of the problem is disarming and unique. A remarkable book – highly recommended.
Scott Stevens has been a guest on my blog several times, once with an interview and also with a feature about his alcohology app. He has written two previous books on Alcoholism and his latest book “Adding Fire to the Fuel” has just been released in the kindle version.
Scott launched the e-Book, launched the redesign of his website (www.alcohologist.com) and taken on an executive role with a new luxury addiction rehab.
HEALTH REPORTER TO LAUNCH THIRD ALCOHOLISM BOOK
@ SAN FRANCISCO’S REEL RECOVERY FILM FESTIVAL Burlington, Wis., May 8, 2015 –
The stigma of alcoholism is what keeps many alcoholics from seeking help for their disease. The controversial subject is captured in Adding Fire to the Fuel, the third recovery-oriented book by award-winning author Scott Stevens.
Stevens … is rolling out the new book at what he calls “the right time for the recovery movement, in conjunction with two of the nation’s most meaningful organizations dedicated to reducing stigma. Much of what is known about the disease of alcoholism connects it to flaws in genes which control metabolism of alcohol as well as the brain’s risk/reward biochemistry.“
It’s a disease.
Same kind of chronic, progressive, incurable-but-treatable, primary and fatal classification as cancer or diabetes.
When we handle people with those other diseases with empathy, and dish out distaste to alcoholics or recovering ones, we create a social and economic problem that’s passed its tipping point.”
The new book, available at all retailers following the California launch, looks at the stigma around alcoholism and alcoholism recovery as a $226 billion annual problem hiding in plain sight.
“The story of alcohol and America’s affair with it keeps it from being recognized as the problem. Instead, people with the disease of alcoholism are considered the problem. ‘Alcoholic’ is a pejorative today. That’s ripe for change,” says the author.
The third-leading cause of preventable death and illness stays under the radar because of good advertising and bad stigma, according to Stevens.
“Its purveyors are proclaimed as charitable kings. Those who use it and discover alcohol has health and social consequences, are labeled as villains, killjoys, weak, weird, or morally off. What that stigma does to keep people from getting help also keeps the discussion of what alcohol does to you behind the wishful-thinking-driven chatter about what it does for you. The tipping point has passed. The status quo: No longer sustainable or acceptable.”
_______________________ http://www.alcohologist.com __________________________
Adding Fire to the Fuel examines: How families and communities feed public and self-stigma even while the stigma holds them back; How stigma has become a barrier to many who want help; How to hang on to sobriety in a pro-alcohol world; And how PANonymous alcoholics will reduce stigma more than all the protests combined.
Adding Fire to the Fuel (ISBN: 978-1- 63192-906-9).
Stevens says :
“It’s an honor to be involved with two of the groups so influential in tearing down stigma and portraying alcohol accurately. We all endorse the fact that sobriety is a better thing to have than to lack.” He adds, “There’s an impressive recovery atmosphere in northern California that is as robust as you find in Arizona, Florida, Texas and other locales. It’s a great place for a recovering alcoholic like me to debut a book like this one.”
The independent author launched Every Silver Lining Has a Cloud at Milwaukee’s largest independent bookseller, Boswell Books, in 2013. ###
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Stevens is a noted journalist on alcoholism and a founding influencer of the world’s largest medical portal, HealthTap.com. His books on the disease include 2010’s What the Early Worm Gets and 2012’s Every Silver Lining Has a Cloud, which earned finalist honors in the Indie Book Awards and USA Best Books Awards in 2013. For more information on the new book, please visit http://www.alcohologist.com and for information on the film festival, please visit http://www.filmfestsfbay.org.
Using literary and philosophical quotes as headings the chapters all hit home with a few very well-put truths about alcoholism, society and human behaviour.
Blame has never helped anyone. The stigma attached to alcoholism, the stereotypes, prejudices and misinformation contribute largely to the problem because they stop people from seeking help.
Stevens is an award-winning journalist with great analytical capabilities, a sharp dissecting mind and first-hand knowledge of the subject – and all of this shines through every chapter.
Stevens has done a lot of research and adds well-presented statistics and data to bust a few myths and support his many so truthful statements and thought-provoking questions.
“Has every Kenyan won a marathon? Is every alcoholic a train wreck?”
The book is full of knowledge, clarifications and pointers and the world would be a more compassionate and better place if everyone read and took a leaf out of this book.
To quote one of the great chapter headings / quote from Johannes Kepler: “I much prefer the sharpest criticism of a single intelligent man to the thoughtless approval of the masses.”
As society we have a lot to learn. How we treat our weakest and vulnerable and how we help them – active and passive- says a lot about us. Information and the right attitude are still not widely spread. The book is a useful tool to help us with this. A must read for anyone.