By reading this autobiography I could tell that Ronnie poured out every inch of his heart and soul into the pages. In order for the reader to gain a deeper understanding about his troubling addictions, Ronnie sacrificed his privacy and intimate lifestyle relationships. As I finished reading this book I began searching some feedback on the net, positive and negative. Many of the positive comments on this book exclaims how this autobiography helped them cope with the extremities and hardships of addiction in the present day world.
The negative feedback, though, focused on how Ronnie’s stories seemed lavish and fabricated. Many of the people who wrote the negative comments focused not on the mission of the book; however, they focused on the satirical writing style and how the story related to present day extremities. Ronnie concludes his autobiography by stating that his biggest plight for this book is that he hopes it will influence someone to stop drinking, smoking, cheating, and lying. This book explores the differences between succumbing and overcoming an addiction.
The protagonist, Ronnie Steele, dives into the realms of testament as he attempts to shield current addicts and future human beings who are interested in drinking and smoking from the same trials and tribulations that he went through. Throughout the book Ronnie consistently mentions how he was the sole cause of his substance abuse. He tells the reader that he felt like he couldn’t control his urge for alcohol, thus forcing him to continue to do it. Ronnie mentions how alcohol was not the only thing he was addicted to; lying, cheating, and smoking was a part of his addiction.
Through months and months of dealing with his addiction, Ronnie finally was forced to go through treatment. He gives a detailed account of his road to recovery and how it was difficult yet necessary for his well-being and the future well-being for his family. Ronnie’s partner, Sarah, was a very good woman for seeing him through his recovery and treatment as he dealt with his addiction. The thing that surprised me about this autobiography was how Ronnie identified one of the sources for his addiction: early childhood problems.
Being a psychology major, I know that many psychological abnormalities, such as addiction, can be explained by environmental factors. Ronnie gives a detailed account of how abuse was a huge and vital part of his childhood. The theory that is evident in this book is the on addiction. Addiction is described as using a drug in a way for which it is not attended for, that will lead to long or short term harm to the user or others, and the result in the user no longer being able to be responsible for his/her thoughts, feelings, or behavior.
DSM-IV classifies addiction and drug abuse as a maladaptive pattern of substance use leading to clinically significant impairment or distress. There are currently five different models that covers addiction: medical model, psychodynamic model, social model, moral model, and bio-psycho-social model. The model that seems to cover the key experiences in this book is the psychodynamic model. This model explains how drug abuse and addiction is a symptom of underlying psychological problems and is used as a maladaptive psychological coping strategy.
I came up with the conclusion that this model fits with the essence of this book because Ronnie uses drugs to resolve his internal conflict with the person who abused him in early childhood. From reading this book and exploring Ronnie Steele’s online blogs I can include a few different things about drugs and society. I can conclude that drugs are a big part of society’s coping mechanism.
From the information that I know from being a Psychology major and the information I received from reading this book and blog, many addictions are triggered by drug abuse from use of drugs to cope with past and present day problems. In this autobiography, the main character uses drugs as an outlet to forget his past; with addiction, though, comes rehabilitation. I can also conclude, from this autobiography, that rehabilitation in America works. I can conclude this because Ronnie had fought a great fight with addiction to alcohol and through the encouragement of his partner and his rehabilitation he overcame it.
It was a difficult battle and struggle for Ronnie but the fact that he overcame his addiction and uses his book as a catalyst for help for other addicts is amazing and inspiring to me. In all, I believe I made a great choice in selecting this book out of the many novels on the list. This autobiography explores not only the recovery from addiction, but also the road to recovery. I love how Ronnie is so open with his testament and how he wants his book to inspire others. I believe this book is a great read and I really appreciated this being on the list.