Smacked..A Story of White Collar Ambition, Addiction, and Tragedy

October 5, 2021
Hosted by Dr. Patricia Halligan

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Guest Information

Episode Description

Eilene Zimmerman is an experienced journalist and regular contributor to The New York Times. She is author of the powerful and heart-breaking memoir, "Smacked...A Story of White Collar Ambition, Addiction, and Tragedy." Eilene begins today's podcast with a shocking reading, in which she describes discovering her ex-husband's body in his home. She did not notice the track marks in his arms, nor the drug paraphernalia that surrounded his body on the floor until the coroner brought it to her attention. In a desperate attempt to fathom what happened to him and how she and everyone else in his world missed it, Eilene set out to create a map of Peter's life the year before he died. Peter was a high-powered, affluent attorney and senior partner in a prestigious law firm in Silicon Valley. Eileen shares research that illuminates the high risk of addiction and mental health problems among attorneys. We discuss the legal culture that promotes workaholism, isolation, depression and addiction. Eilene tells us what the American Bar Association and some individual law firms are doing to increase awareness and help prevent tragic endings like Peter's. Eileen is honest and personal as she describes her own personal journey and what has helped her heal. She comments on the impact that workaholism and drug addiction has on children and tells us why she decided to tell her children the truth about their father's death.


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RECOVERY: THE HERO’S JOURNEY provides best practice information and support to people struggling with Substance Use Disorders/Process Addictions and Prescription Drug Dependence. We confront the stigma surrounding Opioid Use Disorder and Benzodiazepine Dependence, understanding that both are the direct result of an overprescribing epidemic. We discuss Buprenorphine, a first line, long term treatment for Opioid Use Disorder. We validate people struggling with Benzodiazepine Dependence (ie-Xanax/Klonopin), and offer resources and a recovery plan.

Experts explore Eating Disorders, Sex Addiction, PTSD, and the effects of today’s Cannabis on teens and young adults, offering guidance and resources to individuals struggling with these issues and their families. This podcast gracefully combines interviews with experts in the field and patient stories of recovery and redemption. The show is about connection, reclaiming personal integrity and hope.

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Dr. Patricia Halligan

Dr. Patricia Halligan

Dr. Patricia Halligan is an Addiction Psychiatrist, who specializes in the treatment of patients diagnosed with Substance Use Disorders, Prescription Drug Dependency and Process Addictions. She completed a residency in Psychiatry at Cornell-The New York Hospital, followed by a Fellowship in Addiction Psychiatry at the Medical University of South Carolina in 1998. Dr. Halligan is double board certified in General Psychiatry and Addiction Psychiatry and is a trained CSAT (Certified Sex Addiction Therapist). Believing in the healing power of connection, she trained at the Center for Group Studies in NYC and runs modern analytic group therapy for people in recovery.

Dr. Halligan has been prescribing Buprenorphine in her private practice since 2003 and continues to be a strong advocate for patients with Opioid Use Disorder throughout the Opioid Epidemic. She has spent the last two decades in the trenches of two tragic epidemics caused by the overprescribing of both Opioids and Benzodiazepines.

Aware that the lack of addiction training in medicine has largely contributed to both epidemics, she has resolved to devote some time to teaching. She creates CME accredited addiction education videos and training workshops for health care providers. Dr. Halligan decided to create this show to support people who are taking the hero’s journey into recovery and their families. You’ll hear interviews with experts surrounding best practices, and embrace the elimination of stigma.

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Episode Directory

November 2021

October 2021

  • 10/26/2021: MDMA-ASSISTED THERAPY FOR PTSD Listen Now
  • 10/19/2021: INTERNET GAMING DISORDER Listen Now
  • 10/5/2021: Smacked..A Story of White Collar Ambition, Addiction, and Tragedy Listen Now

September 2021

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