Being a recovered alcoholic and boozeless for nearly 14 years, you can imagine how wide my eyes opened when I read recent headlines about research on lomazenil.
The commotion began when some zealous journalists got loosey-goosey with the facts – claiming that researchers at Yale University had released results of a preliminary study showing that the drug lomazenil, when taken before drinking, weakens the effect of alcohol.
Well, turns out that is not exactly true. According to folks at Yale, there has been no study at Yale about lomazenil’s ability to thwart the effects of alcohol. Yale is NOT developing a “sober pill.”
In the throes of my last and hopefully final deep depression, I told my therapist and nurse practitioner: “Anything happens to her, I’m outta here.” By “anything” I meant death.
I had no reason to live except for my daughter. She was my anchor to life. I had secretly tried to kill myself twice before, as a young woman, and I had no problem at age 46 of doing it again – this time with success.
Five years earlier she had saved my life again, when I decided to get sober – for her. I didn’t like myself enough to get sober for me. In fact, I would have been fine drinking myself into oblivion. But I had grown up in an alcoholic household – as did my mother – and did not want that childhood for my daughter.
My mantra – over and over – was: “This s**t is going to stop here.” So, I got off work, fed her, put her in jammies and dragged my tired little girl to 12-Step meetings, where she fell asleep on the couch while her mother white-knuckled it for another hour. I got up the next morning, put her in her uniform, waited for the school bus with her and then went for the last 30 minutes of another 12-step meeting before work.
For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
At least not when it comes to insurance parity. For all the years of effort devoted to ensuring that insurance companies cover mental illnesses as they do “physical” illnesses, the insurance companies have fought back with the relentless determination of a termite, quietly gnawing away at the support we so desperately need.
Which is why we must support the Parity Implementation Coalition and their upcoming hearings. At these hearings across the county consumers, providers, representatives from the business and insurer communities and state and local representatives will testify on parity implementation and enforcement.
If you are a patient or provider who has complaints, the Coalition wants to hear from you. Depending on the nature of your complaint, the Coalition may be able to provide help in resolving your problem or point you to other resources. Reports will also help the Coalition identify potential patterns of critical concern to federal regulators.