Death Rehab

Wake Up!

Kristian’s death has affected me more than I might admit.   Rather foolishly I had a picture of him on my phone that lit up every time somebody called.  I deleted it today-I was making myself sadder than I needed to be.

Found myself looking at pornography last night-late-trying to soothe myself-trying to throw a warm blanket over my feelings.   It didn’t work.  I still woke up this morning overwhelmed with fear.  I wrote to John:

5am.  Waking up in huge amounts of fear.  Crushing, overwhelming fear. Think I may have come to the end of the line. Cannot go on.  Making bad decisions.  Can’t face anything.  Financial ruin facing me.  Nowhere to run to.   Don’t trust anyone. Obsessed.  Looked at porn this morning to try to sooth me-did not work.  Nothing works.  Do not see any more life ahead of me.

As dawn broke over the mountain I expected those particular ghouls to vanish, yet, those pesky demons lingered all day-like they were waiting patiently to claim me.

My father died when he was 53.

Found myself looking at pornography..

Now, that sounds like it happened to me rather than me searching around for that perfect porn moment.  Porn is like research, it’s scholarly, frustrating, intense.

Feeling desperately sad.  Not sobbing like when the Darling Big Dog was killed.

Cannot listen to Kate Bush or Soft Cell (remember listening with him) but rather strangely listening to the Spice Girls, which softens the edges-like having a wank.

Throwing the towel in.  “Goodbye my friend.”  Remember when we were best friends with Matt Rowe who wrote all those huge number one hits?    “Goodbye my friend.”   Remember New Years Eve at The Mercer Hotel in NYC with Melanie Sporty Spice and Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman?  Odd mixture that night?  What a night.

So I’m chatting with a friend about his childhood and he tells me that his father was sent to prison when he was 11 years old.  The only way he knew how to deal with the shame was to lie to his classmates.  He knew where his father was but told his friends that his father was on a business trip-he told lies because the truth was far too complicated.  Gosh, I related to that.  Lying to make life easier:  My father is on a business trip.  Telling palatable childish lies leading to a life of fantasy, pornography, disconnection.

It took me so long to let the truth set me free.  Now I try so hard to tell the truth.  Lyle brought word from England that I had a terrible temper.  Oh yes, I remember that.  My temper was a daily occurrence for so long.  Before I went to Sex Rehab I really had no idea why I was so angry-after sex rehab I fully understood why I was angry and the mechanism that controlled it.  So, to all that I shouted at and screamed at and made cry-I was wrong, I was wrong, I was wrong.

Sorry to repeat myself but..

When Kristian died suddenly a door opened into a world I considered closed to me.   I had considered suicide for as long as I can remember but never seriously.  Death, after all, is a very long time.  Suddenly there are enough fun people in the after life that I might have a good time.  Giggle with.   I am not scared of death-I was just scared of being bored when I got there-now with Kristian dead-death seems like a realistic option.  Holding the door open for me.

I am looking for clues for what might keep me alive?  What can I believe in?

This morning I heard John talking about being asleep and how much of the time I have been asleep.  I fall asleep when I first meet some one-a deep sleep.  I always thought that it was because I felt comfortable but now I see that it was to escape intimacy or worse that something might happen to me.

Moths in my clothes, little dog pawing at me…home sick for Whitstable, for Battersea Park..can we walk there together you and I?

Selling art-legitimate source of misery?  My friends didn’t want to buy my art.  They want to buy art from a legitimate source.  Funny.

Lying.  It’s a choice.  To tell the truth or lie?  It seems obvious doesn’t it?   Well, these muddled days, as Michael Moore reminded us when he picked up his Oscar, are ‘Lying times’.  Within a relationship there are all kinds of lies but I don’t want to tell HIM lies.  I just want him to know the truth.

The silence in the Malibu Mountains, the thudding base from the music playing in the apartment above my Hollywood apartment.   Both the silence and the interminable base making my head ache.   My head aches.

The questions that haunt me:  How could he have taken such a risk?   How can he be calling me to join him there and why am I listening?

One day I will write about FULL DISCLOSURE-a most unsavory practice.

I love you MR DARLING NYC-you are keeping me alive,  your love and your perfect smile are keeping the worst of these terrible demons from driving me to the gates of hell.

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26 replies on “Wake Up!”

I can relate a lot to what you’ve written. I’m in DC visiting my “big brother” and have been wandering around the city a lot. I find myself feeling so incredibly alone even though I’m surrounded by so many people. I’m terrified of the metro at times because I’m not sure of what I’m going to do next. I press myself against the concrete wall and shut my eyes, waiting for the train to show up. It’s the only way I know to keep myself in the moment.

I told my the guys who I now call my “Big brothers” about what my mom was doing to me a few years ago. Right after I graduated H.S and knew I was going to University. They were understanding and it was like there was a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. I didn’t have to hide anymore. When I was scared I could tell them and in return they would comfort me.

I’m sorry, I don’t have any great words of wisdom, but I can relate and I hope that you are able to share yourself and your story with him.

I haven’t checked out you blog in a while but am glad I did today. I’m very both touched by this post and the one you wrote in tribute to your friend. As for the watching porn again, don’t you hate how we always go back to that? I understand and am praying for your recovery.


I’ve been reading your blog for quite some time now. Half of the time, and most of that time being the not so happy ones, I feel like I’m reading about myself… you know, in a sense. But the reason I continue reading – it’s not because I enjoy witnessing misfortune or heartache – it’s because I’m continually astounded by your ability to keep going, your strength, your ability to cope, endure, and come out of it in the end. I hope, and believe, you’ll get through this as well.

As this is your blog, and not mine, I won’t go on about my own experiences. But I can relate. To a lot. And I must say, you’re much further along in your journey than I. I only hope that your journey continues.

I know I’m an anonymous internet commentator, but please know I’m thinking of you.

Good luck with everything.


Duncan, Your latest blog entry concerns me. In the past several months, you have gotten a mega-dose of “life on life’s terms” and I worry you do not avail of adequate support to process the serious nature of events presenting in your experience. Having a Love is good, but it’s not enough. Could you please check in at a meeting or with a sponsor/therapist/counselor sooner rather than later? My best, L

Duncan, I recently discovered your twitter/blog after discovering Jenny’s as well. I watched sex rehab and have watched all of Dr. Drew’s rehab shows thus far. So I watched your stint there as well, or at least what they showed of it.

Please hang in there. As Leslie suggested, check out a meeting or call a sponsor. Check in with someone. Please. It seems you have plans to write more, so I don’t think you are set to take leave of this earthly existence quite yet. But you do sound terribly desperate, and that is worrisome. I don’t know you, but believe it or not, I do care whether you are around or not. I have issues myself, though they are different from yours and involve managing depression and anxiety without the abuse aspect. But I can relate to feeling hopeless and like nothing will ever change and nothing ever gets better. It does. People care. Life is worth it. I would rather be here struggling than not around at all. That is what it comes down to for me.

I hope you can find solace for another day, another week, another year, and so on. Hang in there. People are out here who care. *hugs*

“I was wrong, I was wrong, I was wrong.”

My best friend killed himself. To me, it sounds silly to say that – “my best friend”. Because, I don’t think he knew that he was my best friend. I don’t think he know how much I loved him. Or, the decimation that he’d leave behind him when he left. I keep my distance. I’ve had lots of friends die of heroin overdoses etc… But, he & I, we talked every day. Yet, I’m not so sure that even I knew he was my best friend before I lost him. I had similar experiences to you, in youth. It confused me, deeply. I pushed him away as fast and hard as I could. But, I loved him. He was the only person I’ve ever met that I felt was like me… that I felt I could identify with. I can’t listen to Alanis Morissette’s “Joining You” with out just breaking down and crying… even to this day. He was my soul mate and mentor… and then some. He was so much smarter than I am. It was such a terrible loss. I know that it seems silly for me to frame it in Hollywood products, in Alanis’ work. But, I’m not from Hollywood… I’m from a working class neighborhood. I hope that if you ever think about death, or risking life, that you’re thinking about the collective consciousness that surrounds, and observes, you. Because of your fate and talent, you have a significant impact no matter what you do. Too many young people are seeing stars die these days.

Hey Duncan…

In late 2000, I lost my partner to suicide. In early 2002, I lost an ex-partner-best-friend to his long-standing self-destructive impulses.

I’ve lived in the shadow of that kind of craziness for too long…

How do we figure out what’s next?

so much grief in recovery, physical exercise and bathing helps, having a good cry
feelings come and feelings go, if I allow myself to use the tools of the program I will not stay stuck forever,
love and fellowship

Lies that are lying to you; telling you your in control… this was my life for so many years… yes I still lie but now rather than 80% of the time it is 1% and most of the time I don’t realise i have lied until afterwards…!! Crazy though it may seem all I want to crave is honesty from others and me… but even if I don’t always get what I want I know I am happy in trying… and not in the possessionis sense… in the mental sense… with this over the past few years I have been able to turn to myself and think… awh well it could be worse…! Many years ago when I lived in Spain; someone told me that I would always have to work to get what I want and that nothing would ever come easy but you will always pull through and acheive what you want to acheive… but most importantly you should never change…! This was a stranger who stopped me in the middle of the street to tell me this… a normal looking woman on holidays with her husband… I keep thinking to myself have I changed? But offcourse I have… fundamentally I am the same person who laughs at the same things but I am stronger and finding that strength was always going to be the tough path… and it was… I had to be honest with myself and remember it is going to tough at times… it is going to pull at your heart so had that you think something is stuck inside there…! It was very strange but every time I go through a difficult time I keep repeating this to myself time and time again ‘be honest, nothing will come easy, you will always have to fight, don’t change’ After a bit of time I snap out of the depression then regain control and I believe that this has got me through it… that and talking to my friends past or present in my head always puts me at ease…(without sounding like a nutter that is… no voices…)! We are very strange as animals and we can change and adapt to any situation. My personal spark is going out on a regularly basis over the past few weeks; but it will ignite again. Kristian has been heavily in my thoughts… I still feel very sad but not heavy anymore… though at this moment in time I can’t look at any photos or videos… just the kind words from his friends that show how much he was loved. This makes me smile again. I feel sad for their loss but happy for their memories as he was such a passionate and positive person and will always will be … hopfully this will be his legacy…! If we don’t smile at the memories then why are they there…? You obviously knew Kristian much more than I ever will but if he were to describe you im sure he would say that you are strong, willing and have always been a fighter… this is something to be very proud of… it is something that say’s ‘I am in control and I am where I want to be’. You are! This is obvious… as you have a got a very private person to spill his guts and life out on a plate from nowhere… and I haven’t got a clue why…??? I suppose I hear you pain and it is a very distressing noise to hear as I have been there and to an extent still am there! I know you will find your strength and you will regain control of your pain… but remember it may take time… allow yourself to grieve…! And look on the bright side… next time I write it will only be a couple of lines… everything else is already out there…! Xx SJG

You have very wise readers, Duncan. Please listen to what they are saying to you. Don’t be afraid to get help,your therapist especially. And there are always answers to financial problems,perhaps your therapist knows of someone who would give you solid advice.
I am holding you in my heart.

All I can say is this: I have hope for you, and care for a fellow human being who I don’t know, but is deserving simply by virtue of being a human being. Please remeber that. I hope you find the strength to keep on. I’m sure the world would be dimmer without you in it.

I have nothing brilliantly insightful to say. Losing a friend is horrible. We either acknowledge both the friend and the pain, or we deny the pain. The former is so much harder but healthier. Keep talking about it and know that your pain is universal. You can talk to any person on the planet who’s lost a loved one and everyone will instantly know the feeling and offer you support. Just don’t hole up alone and withdraw from life.

look at the outpouring of love and care for you Duncan. We all empathize and know grief personally..the big trick is to not let that bastard grief win.
Please listen to all who suggest seeing some saved me and it can save you too, you are loved dear, and so worthy of love.

Duncan,You have the nicest group of caring individuals who log in to read your thoughts every day. They (we) genuinely are concerned.
You have dealt with too much lately regarding lost friends.
This too will pass.
Make your life a tribute to those beautiful young men who called you ‘friend’
Do what is best to avoid sinking, no sad songs.You already are doing that by not listening to Soft Cell etc. Dance to happy music, celebrate your next phase in life. Mr NY did not go away, time will tell what goes on there.
I think of what you said whenever that sinking spiraling feeling comes over me, ‘STAY IN THE NOW!’and I do. You helped so much writing about that.
You are obvously depressed and with good reason.
Seek help.Heck, call Dr Drew, he owes you.
Go to Malibu and walk in the hills, take off your shoes and paddle in the ocean, see where you are.
You were a friend to those who passed. Life is rarely a cakewalk for anyone. You are wading through mud right now,keep going you will be sitting in golden sunshine soon.

I hate that you’re feeling this way. I don’t have any good advice right now. Mostly because, when you’re feel down, a lot of the cliches sound so lame. What I can do is send you a great big energy hug and pray that your cloud will lift sooner rather than later…and also tell you that you look very handsome in the picture you posted…

I have been where you are and I know it does seem like things are too painful to bother continuing. But you can, you will. Just like at times life gives us great things and we feel on top of the world but that passes, so, too, will this. Losing friends, losing your special dog, coming to terms with all the horrors you went through as a kid and how that affected you unknowingly for decades. Those are all very difficult things to deal with. I hope you are able to get past this. When someone publicly talks about suicide I know they are pretty serious. I am scared for you and I wish I could help. All I can do is tell you I have felt it, and made it through, and I pray you do,too.

Whoa, that’s some heavy shit right there. Two things flew about in my mind while reading your post.

First, I should let you know that I did almost die nearly five years ago. I’ve had both major struggles and major successes since, both physical and emotional.

The biggest thing I learned since my accident (I use that term very loosely), is that I have no one and nothing more definite on this earth to believe in but myself. Nothing.

People often ask me if I feel like I have a closer relationship with god since, like I ought to be grateful that some imaginary being helped me survive a broken neck, skull fracture, traumatic brain injury, and the list goes on.

The fact is, the only one that really helped me get to the point I’m at now is myself. Sure my family supported me along the way, but I, and I alone, am the one that hauls my own ass out of bed every day and continue to see doctors.

I openly call myself an atheist now. That took me a while, like it was some big secret. I stopped breathing for 7 minutes. I didn’t see light, no one took my hand, none of that crap. There was nothing.

Believing in myself has given me a lot of strength. It’s really helped me to realize that if I truly want something in life, I have to believe it and get it. Period.

As an aside, my accident occurred 3 weeks after handing in my masters thesis. You want to talk about loss? I’ll never be able to live what I worked so hard for, for most of my life really.

In the face of that loss, I managed to find something entirely different. I found a rescue org that rescues stray dogs from local First Natins reserves. These poor animals come with such awful stories, it takes a lot of focus off myself.

I became a positive reinforcement based dog trainer, and haven’t looked back since. It is different from what I had planned for myself, but I think it fills me up more. In the face of despair, I realized there was nothing to lose, and I chose to pursue something I really love and am passionate about.

I didn’t even know that at the time. I believed I was going to be a primary teacher, my entire life. In a way, my identity was lost too. I had to create everything new for myself.

The other thought I had, and I say this with all the sincerity and positivity in me, have you considered EMDR therapy? It is used to treat PTSD, and the resulting symptoms. This may help you a lot.

I an having this therapy currently, and can’t tell you the incredible changes I have seen in
myself. It’s almost like magic.

I wish you all the best and hope that you find what you are looking for.

Just checked on EMDR , it sounds like it is a very good treatment. I am looking into it.thanks for the heads up Jo, and I hope you continue with positive changes. Duncan , check it out, it sounds perfect for you.

hey dunc.. you may be right
alot of women here.

not there’s anything wrong with that.
and god bless us all for that.

thanks robb! perhaps men dont feel as comfortable commenting on blogs, who knows..i figure its one giant melting pot of human beings..compassionate people. 😉

How are you Duncan, of all the times I read about your blog this felt like that you are at your most depressed moments which made you believe other things. Come on now Duncan , you wouldn’t bring us this far just to give up on everything. I am not saying you are responsible to the people that follow you, but to tell you that your reason to live should not only be your NEW YORK love, but all the people that you have helped through telling your true story and gave them hope. I say that because I am one of the people that would hurt if we lose you, and believe me you are so important to us.

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