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The Weight of Air: A Story of the Lies about Addiction and the Truth about Recovery

The Weight of Air: A Story of the Lies about Addiction and the Truth about Recovery - David Poses

The Weight of Air: A Story of the Lies about Addiction and the Truth about Recovery


A groundbreaking memoir of a double life fueled by heroin addiction and mental illness

While his wife and two-year-old daughter watched TV in the living room, David Poses was in the kitchen, measuring the distance from his index finger to his armpit. He needed to be sure he could pull the trigger with a shotgun barrel in his mouth. Twenty-six inches. Thirty-two years old. More than a decade in a double life fueled by heroin addiction and mental illness.

The Weight of Air chronicles David's struggle to overcome the depression that led him to opioids as a teenager. By nineteen, he'd been through medical detox, inpatient rehab, twelve-step programs, and a halfway house, unable to reconcile his experience with conventional wisdom. He saw his addiction as secondary, as a symptom of depression, but the experts insisted that addiction was the primary problem. Over the next thirteen years, he went from one relapse to the next, drowning in guilt, shame, and secrets--until he finally found the treatment that saved his life.

With grit and brutal honesty, David shines a bright light on the flaws in our traditional addiction and recovery models, exposing the opioid crisis for what it really is: a convergence of two deadly epidemics.

"The Weight of Air is a moving, tender, thoughtful account of addiction and also a compelling critique of a lot that's wrong with the dominant model of addiction treatment."--Johann Hari, New York Times best-selling author of Chasing the Scream

"Entertaining, honest, darkly comedic, and smart as hell, David Poses's The Weight of Air is a painfully accurate portrayal of heroin addiction and the sorts of treatments forced upon us. . . . Poses is about to turn your whole worldview on addiction upside down in the best way."--Amy Dresner, author of My Fair Junkie: A Memoir of Getting Dirty and Staying Clean

"A fluidly written, disarmingly blunt account of heroin addiction and recovery."--Keith Humphreys, former White House drug policy adviser to presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama


"Soulful, achingly honest . . . A potent addition to the literature on drug addiction and recovery."--Kirkus Reviews (starred)

While his wife and two-year-old daughter watched TV in the living room, David Poses was in the kitchen, measuring the distance from his index finger to his armpit. He needed to be sure he could pull the trigger with a shotgun barrel in his mouth. Twenty-six inches. Thirty-two years old. More than a decade in a double life fueled by depression and heroin.

In his groundbreaking memoir, The Weight of Air, David chronicles his struggle to overcome mental illness and addiction. By age nineteen, he'd been through medical detox, inpatient rehab, twelve-step programs, and a halfway house. He saw his drug use as a symptom of depression, but the experts insisted that addiction was the problem. Over the next thirteen years, he went from one relapse to the next, drowning in guilt, shame, and secrets, until he finally found an evidence-based treatment that not only saved his life, but helped him thrive.

With grit, humor, and brutal honesty, David's story exposes the danger in traditional recovery models: they actually increase stigma and the risk of overdose, relapse, and death. As depression and addiction rates skyrocket and overdose fatalities surge, The Weight of Air is a scathing indictment of our failed response to the opioid crisis--and proof that success is possible.

"David Poses's unflinching memoir takes you to the dark corners of addiction--and shows there's a way out."--Eric Eyre, Pulitzer Prize winner and author of Death in Mud Lick

"A searingly honest addiction memoir with a much-needed perspective."--Maia Szalavitz, New York Times best-selling author of Unbroken Brain


"Soulful, achingly honest . . . A potent addition to the literature on drug addiction and recovery."--Kirkus Reviews (starred)

While his wife and two-year-old daughter watched TV in the living room, David Poses was in the kitchen, measuring the distance from his index finger to his armpit. He needed to be sure he could pull the trigger with a shotgun barrel in his mouth. Twenty-six inches. Thirty-two years old. More than a decade in a double life fueled by depression and heroin.

In his groundbreaking memoir, The Weight of Air, David chronicles his struggle to overcome mental illness and addiction. By age nineteen, he'd been through medical detox, inpatient rehab, twelve-step programs, and a halfway house. He saw his drug use as a symptom of depression, but the experts insisted that addiction was the problem. Over the next thirteen years, he went from one relapse to the next, drowning in guilt, shame, and secrets, until he finally found an evidence-based treatment that not only saved his life, but helped him thrive.

With grit, humor, and brutal honesty, David's story exposes the danger in traditional recovery models: they actually increase stigma and the risk of overdose, relapse, and death. As depression and addiction rates skyrocket and overdose fatalities surge, The Weight of Air is a scathing indictment of our failed response to the opioid crisis--and proof that success is possible.

"David Poses's unflinching memoir takes you to the dark corners of addiction--and shows there's a way out."--Eric Eyre, Pulitzer Prize winner and author of Death in Mud Lick

"A searingly honest addiction memoir with a much-needed perspective."--Maia Szalavitz, New York Times best-selling author of Unbroken Brain

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A groundbreaking memoir of a double life fueled by heroin addiction and mental illness

While his wife and two-year-old daughter watched TV in the living room, David Poses was in the kitchen, measuring the distance from his index finger to his armpit. He needed to be sure he could pull the trigger with a shotgun barrel in his mouth. Twenty-six inches. Thirty-two years old. More than a decade in a double life fueled by heroin addiction and mental illness.

The Weight of Air chronicles David's struggle to overcome the depression that led him to opioids as a teenager. By nineteen, he'd been through medical detox, inpatient rehab, twelve-step programs, and a halfway house, unable to reconcile his experience with conventional wisdom. He saw his addiction as secondary, as a symptom of depression, but the experts insisted that addiction was the primary problem. Over the next thirteen years, he went from one relapse to the next, drowning in guilt, shame, and secrets--until he finally found the treatment that saved his life.

With grit and brutal honesty, David shines a bright light on the flaws in our traditional addiction and recovery models, exposing the opioid crisis for what it really is: a convergence of two deadly epidemics.

"The Weight of Air is a moving, tender, thoughtful account of addiction and also a compelling critique of a lot that's wrong with the dominant model of addiction treatment."--Johann Hari, New York Times best-selling author of Chasing the Scream

"Entertaining, honest, darkly comedic, and smart as hell, David Poses's The Weight of Air is a painfully accurate portrayal of heroin addiction and the sorts of treatments forced upon us. . . . Poses is about to turn your whole worldview on addiction upside down in the best way."--Amy Dresner, author of My Fair Junkie: A Memoir of Getting Dirty and Staying Clean

"A fluidly written, disarmingly blunt account of heroin addiction and recovery."--Keith Humphreys, former White House drug policy adviser to presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama


"Soulful, achingly honest . . . A potent addition to the literature on drug addiction and recovery."--Kirkus Reviews (starred)

While his wife and two-year-old daughter watched TV in the living room, David Poses was in the kitchen, measuring the distance from his index finger to his armpit. He needed to be sure he could pull the trigger with a shotgun barrel in his mouth. Twenty-six inches. Thirty-two years old. More than a decade in a double life fueled by depression and heroin.

In his groundbreaking memoir, The Weight of Air, David chronicles his struggle to overcome mental illness and addiction. By age nineteen, he'd been through medical detox, inpatient rehab, twelve-step programs, and a halfway house. He saw his drug use as a symptom of depression, but the experts insisted that addiction was the problem. Over the next thirteen years, he went from one relapse to the next, drowning in guilt, shame, and secrets, until he finally found an evidence-based treatment that not only saved his life, but helped him thrive.

With grit, humor, and brutal honesty, David's story exposes the danger in traditional recovery models: they actually increase stigma and the risk of overdose, relapse, and death. As depression and addiction rates skyrocket and overdose fatalities surge, The Weight of Air is a scathing indictment of our failed response to the opioid crisis--and proof that success is possible.

"David Poses's unflinching memoir takes you to the dark corners of addiction--and shows there's a way out."--Eric Eyre, Pulitzer Prize winner and author of Death in Mud Lick

"A searingly honest addiction memoir with a much-needed perspective."--Maia Szalavitz, New York Times best-selling author of Unbroken Brain


"Soulful, achingly honest . . . A potent addition to the literature on drug addiction and recovery."--Kirkus Reviews (starred)

While his wife and two-year-old daughter watched TV in the living room, David Poses was in the kitchen, measuring the distance from his index finger to his armpit. He needed to be sure he could pull the trigger with a shotgun barrel in his mouth. Twenty-six inches. Thirty-two years old. More than a decade in a double life fueled by depression and heroin.

In his groundbreaking memoir, The Weight of Air, David chronicles his struggle to overcome mental illness and addiction. By age nineteen, he'd been through medical detox, inpatient rehab, twelve-step programs, and a halfway house. He saw his drug use as a symptom of depression, but the experts insisted that addiction was the problem. Over the next thirteen years, he went from one relapse to the next, drowning in guilt, shame, and secrets, until he finally found an evidence-based treatment that not only saved his life, but helped him thrive.

With grit, humor, and brutal honesty, David's story exposes the danger in traditional recovery models: they actually increase stigma and the risk of overdose, relapse, and death. As depression and addiction rates skyrocket and overdose fatalities surge, The Weight of Air is a scathing indictment of our failed response to the opioid crisis--and proof that success is possible.

"David Poses's unflinching memoir takes you to the dark corners of addiction--and shows there's a way out."--Eric Eyre, Pulitzer Prize winner and author of Death in Mud Lick

"A searingly honest addiction memoir with a much-needed perspective."--Maia Szalavitz, New York Times best-selling author of Unbroken Brain

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