Jimmy


16:01 Saturday 2014-06-28.  [Written in the “smoke pit” at the shelter, waiting admission.]

They escorted Jimmy out of here about half an hour ago.  He’s always been a milquetoast.  Now he was shouting and cursing.  “Yeah, I been drinking.”  Whatever happened at the desk, he’s barred out now.  I owe him $2.

He’s diagnosed with bipolar II disorder and ADHD.  I’ve seen him reading books about both of those diseases, but never anything about alcoholism.

He is full of religious talk.  The other night he quoted to me Matthew 21:22, in my book one of the most misleading verses in the whole New Testament.  He was the head usher and full-time caretaker at some church out in the county, for two years, until — he says — someone said he had been drinking.  Whether or not he had been drinking isn’t part of the story he tells; whether or not there was perhaps an outburst like today.

You’ll never get the whole story from an addict who isn’t ready to enter recovery.  A lot of times, you’ll listen and think, “This doesn’t all add up.  There must be more to it.”  Sometimes you won’t.

He was living with his sister until April, when he “had an argument” with her and got put out.  Whether drinking had anything to do with that, or perhaps an outburst like today, he doesn’t say.

Maybe this is what they call “denial.”

Related: Alcoholism basics

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