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What would your life look like if you never learned how to talk to people? How would going to a party and sitting on the outside feel? Now imagine you had the cure to that problem, an inexpensive way to make yourself immediately likable to most of the people there – your gateway to being interesting: relationships, sex, intimacy. One catch though, it might kill you. No, this isn’t the plot to a new episode of Black Mirror. This is alcohol.

Lauren, a severe alcoholic in recovery, joins us today to talk about intimacy and how alcohol can be a gateway to that intimacy temporarily. She discusses how alcohol can lift this “oppressive fog of depression” and bring moments that feel intimate even if in the sober light of morning, they weren’t all that intimate or even connective.

When you’re disconnected from yourself, it’s pretty hard to be connected to others. Content warning for alcoholism and addiction.