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July 1, 2018

Brian Cuban’s Story of Eating Disorder & Addiction – Part 1

Brian Cuban

The Insanity of Addiction – Part I

My recovery has been multi-faceted.

I have been through anorexia, bulimia, addiction problems, alcoholism, steroid addiction, and clinical depression.

I have been in recovery since April 8th, 2007.

Whether it is an eating disorder or addiction, it may not seem humorous at the time, when we’re in the middle of it, but I try to look back on my journey and my recovery with some humor.

When doing so, there is one story that always comes to mind so I’d like to take you all back and share it with you.

The NBA team, the Dallas Mavericks, are going to the finals for the first time in team history. My brother Mark had bought the team in 2000, so, as you might imagine, it was an exciting time for the city and for my family and me.

As you might suspect, I’m going to get some pretty good seats for those games and had an opportunity to get a couple of tickets for my friends. I called my brother, and he got me two free tickets for wonderful seats.

Did I give them to my friends? No.

You’re probably thinking I sold them on eBay for some astronomical amount, well, I didn’t do that either.

That would have been disrespectful to the team, the city, my brother, and my family.

Instead, I took those two tickets and traded them to my cocaine dealer for $1,000 in cocaine.

Selling them on eBay was disrespectful but trading them for cocaine with my dealer was perfectly acceptable, right?

That is how the mind works in addiction.

My dealer shows up at my house because I was a “high-class” addict, so he delivers!

He has this big Ziploc baggie of cocaine. I give him the tickets, he gives me the cocaine, and I run up to my home office, dump all the cocaine out on the desk into a big, white pile.

I’m looking at my “cocaine kingdom” like I’m Scarface.

I do some cocaine, and it gave me the feeling of love and acceptance when I looked in the mirror, the belief that girls like me and that my mother loves me.

At that time, I had a very difficult relationship with my mom.

I felt, when I looked in the mirror, that I was no longer this “fat pig.”

Instead, I saw this monster. I did not love myself, why would anyone else love me?

Man with his face in his hands struggling with his cocaine addictionCocaine, for a few moments, gave me the feeling that everyone did love me, and then I loved myself.

I had been using and was addicted, to cocaine for a very long time at that point.

I was chasing a high that was never going to come again.

I was also profoundly paranoid, which often happens with long-term cocaine addiction. I kept thinking I heard the police outside, thinking “the SWAT team is going to kick down my door.”

I thought maybe I saw the lights and heard the sirens and I have all of this cocaine on my desk, enough to go to jail for a long time. After all, I’m a lawyer; I know these consequences.

I take all the cocaine; I put it back in this big Ziploc baggie. I get in my car, drive up to Home Depot and buy four electrical faceplate outlets, a drill, a saw, and screws.

I drive back to my house, I go to each closet in my upstairs and drill fake electrical outlets in each one through the drywall.

I take the cocaine, put it in separate Ziploc baggies, shut them all up again and put them in the electrical faceplate outlet.

Then, I’m thinking I had done great; I was the cleverest guy ever, the DEA, the police, and the drug dogs have never thought of that one before.

Of course, then, I have to do some more. I felt the pain of addiction paranoia again.

I go back to each of the electrical outlets, unscrew each faceplate, take all the cocaine, put it back in a big Ziploc baggie, go up to the bathroom and flush it all down the toilet…$960 down the drain.

I didn’t do this because of an epiphany on recovery, I did it because of cocaine paranoia.

As so often happens with addiction, when the unpleasantness of an experience is in the rearview mirror, you start thinking it was a one-off.

“I don’t have a problem; it’s all okay.”

The next morning comes, and I feel like an idiot because I flushed all of that cocaine down the toilet.

There’s another game tonight.

How stupid can I be?

basketball game ticketsI call my brother, get two more tickets, call my drug dealer, he shows up with another thousand dollars in cocaine, and he’s looking at me like “dude, you went through $1,000 in cocaine in one night, you have some serious tolerance, what are you an anteater or something?”

Now, I, of course, didn’t want to tell him that I flushed it all down the toilet.

Because I’m thinking it is a badge of honor, among those addicted to cocaine, how much we can do.

The same thing as the night before, dump it out on the desk, do some pain, shame, guilt, paranoia.

Put it all back in the Ziploc baggies, hide in each closet again.

Go back to each closet, get it out and do some more.

Put it back in the Ziploc baggie on more time, go up to the bathroom, drop to my knees (as I did so many times with my addiction and eating disorder), and flushed it all down the toilet again.

They say when Dallas flushes, it ends up in Houston, and so, some people in Houston got kind of high that night.

This story is a perfect example of the “insanity of addiction.”



Virtual Presentation by Brian Cuban in the Dec. 7, 2017 Eating Disorder Hope Inaugural Online Conference & link to the press release at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/eating-disorder-hope-offers-inaugural-online-conference-300550890.html

Brian CubanAbout the Presenter: Author: Brian Cuban is an author whose Amazon best-selling book “Shattered Image: My Triumph Over Body Dysmorphic Disorder,” chronicles his first-hand experiences living with, and recovering from eating disorders, drug addiction and Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD).
Brian speaks regularly about his recovery, childhood bullying, fat shaming and breaking the mail eating disorder stigma. He has spoken at prestigious locations such as University of North Carolina Center for Eating Disorder Excellence. He has keynoted prestigious events such as the Entertainment Industries Council 3rd Annual Media and Mental Health Awards. Brian has appeared on national talk shows such as the Katie Couric show discussing the above issues. Brian also writes extensively on these subjects. His columns have appeared on CNN.com, Foxnews.com, The Huffington Post and in online and print newspapers around the world.

Based in Dallas, Texas, Cuban is also the segment host for “Brian Cuban’s Legal Briefs” on EyeOpenerTV, and founder of his blog, The Cuban Revolution. Additionally, Cuban is a lawyer and activist specializing in 1st Amendment issues and hate speech and has lectured on the topic in major media outlets and conferences around the world. For more information, visit www.briancuban.com

Image of Margot Rittenhouse.About the Transcript Editor: Margot Rittenhouse is a therapist who is passionate about providing mental health support to all in need and has worked with clients with substance abuse issues, eating disorders, domestic violence victims, and offenders, and severely mentally ill youth.

As a freelance writer for Eating Disorder and Addiction Hope and a mentor with MentorConnect, Margot is a passionate eating disorder advocate, committed to de-stigmatizing these illnesses while showing support for those struggling through mentoring, writing, and volunteering. Margot has a Master’s of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Johns Hopkins University.

The opinions and views of our guest contributors are shared to provide a broad perspective of eating disorders. These are not necessarily the views of Eating Disorder Hope, but an effort to offer a discussion of various issues by different concerned individuals.

We at Eating Disorder Hope understand that eating disorders result from a combination of environmental and genetic factors. If you or a loved one are suffering from an eating disorder, please know that there is hope for you, and seek immediate professional help.

Published on July 1, 2018.
Reviewed & Approved on July 1, 2018 by Jacquelyn Ekern MS, LPC

Published on EatingDisorderHope.com

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