Are There Situations Where Too Much Support Can Be Worse Than a Lack of It?

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I remember the first time I heard the term “secondary gain.”

I was transcribing charts for a large hospital system. I had recently transitioned to a floating role, where I had a primary hospital account I worked for but had been considered flexible and capable enough to work basically anywhere. To cover other people’s time off.  » Read more

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Sometimes It’s Easier to Recover Out of Spite Than Out of Self-Love

it's a black T-shirt with white letters that say "this is what recovery looks like"
Image by Portland Prevention / CC BY

2003

“I can’t go without shaving down there anymore,” she says. “And it has nothing to do with feminism. Or being anti-feminism. ”

“Oh yeah?” I say. Because I don’t know what else to say. Over the months we’ve worked together, she’s become progressively more comfortable around me. Probably because I never freak out about what she says,  » Read more

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Old is New Again

When I was in grade school, I was friends with a group of the shyest girls at school. My best friend was the soft-spoken daughter of two zoology professors, and when she got headgear, the bullies descended on her with a fury. Looking back, I’m amazed that my reaction as an 8-year-old was to attack the bullies relentlessly,  » Read more

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I, Smeagol

When the Lord of the Rings movies started coming out (nearly 15 years ago now, how is that even possible?), I was immediately taken with Gollum.

Movie Gollum was markedly even larger than life than his literary counterpart. It wasn’t just his wretched adorableness — although I’m sure that didn’t hurt.  » Read more

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