What's the first thing many women do when they go home? Make a dash for the white wine in the refrigerator.
In Her Best-Kept Secret, journalist Gabrielle Glaser uncovers this hidden-in-plain-sight drinking epidemic - but doesn't cause you to recoil in alarm. She is the first to document that American women are drinking more often than ever and in ever-larger quantities. And she is the first to show that contrary to the impression fostered by reality shows and Gossip Girl,young women alone are not driving these statistics - their moms and grandmothers are, too. But Glaser doesn't wag a finger. Instead, in a funny and tender voice, Glaser looks at the roots of the problem, explores the strange history of women and alcohol in America, drills into the emerging and counterintuitive science about that relationship, and asks: Are women really getting the help they need? Is it possible to come back from beyond the sipping point and develop a healthy relationship with the bottle?
Glaser reveals that, for many women, joining Alcoholics Anonymous is not the answer - it is part of the problem. She shows that as scientists and health professionals learn more about women's particular reactions to alcohol, they are coming up with new and more effective approaches to excessive drinking. In that sense, Glaser offers modern solutions to a very modern problem.
©2013 Gabrielle Glaser (P)2013 Blackstone Audiobooks
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, which included a thorough history of alcohol in America, focusing particularly on the private and public relationship between women and alcohol. The author does an excellent job of mixing historical and scientific facts with personal stories. The author also delves thoroughly into the AA movement and its successes and failures for women; because 12 step programs are heralded as the only "real" answer to addictive behaviors and are so thoroughly embedded in our cultural narrative and judicial system, it makes sense that the author spends a lot of time confronting AA mythologies with both statistical evidence and personal stories. Other reviewers have pointed out that there is only a small portion of the book dedicated to the "and how they can regain control;" the author offers a few pharmacological and behavioral strategies for dealing with women's problem drinking, but this part of the book is not as well developed as the earlier sections. Overall, a very interesting read.
This is a diatribe on her dislike of AA. She does not have the experience to make such judgements.
Don't bother with this book.
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