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Literatour Berks presents a panel on addiction with authors Dan Peres & Eilene Zimmerman moderated by Rabbi Yosef Lipsker of Caron Treatement Centers.
As Needed for Pain chronicles Dan’s path from an awkward, magic-obsessed child in a predominantly Jewish suburb in Baltimore to the top of the magazine publishing world in NYC. He had an enviable high-profile professional life, but he had a secret…he was an opiate addict taking up to 60 pills a day. Peres’s career as an editor at W magazine and Details is well known, but little is known about his private life as a high-functioning drug addict. By turns humorous and gripping, Peres’s story is a cautionary coming-of-age tale filled with unforgettable characters and breathtaking brushes with disaster. But the heart of the book is his journey from outsider to insecure insider, what it took to get him there, and how he found his way back from a killing addiction.
Something was wrong with Peter. His ex-wife, Eilene, saw the dramatic weight loss, jaundiced skin, exhaustion, flu-like sickness. His behavior was erratic, his thinking nonsensical. Eilene assumed it was due to stress from his job as a senior partner at a prominent law firm. What she didn’t realize was that he was struggling with a serious drug addiction, one that would ultimately kill him. The reasons Eilene married a man like Peter (depressed, emotionally distant) has much to do with an early lack of confidence. Later in life, she lacked the confidence to question Peter, to push back, and instead watched him ostensibly killing himself in plain sight. Smacked tells Eilene’s story, Peter’s story, and the larger story of the ways white-collar competition and ambition are driving addiction and unhappiness.