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On addiction and the beloved Philip Seymour Hoffman

As we try and move past comprehending yet another death due to addiction Philip Seymour Hoffman was among many who suffered from a terrible case. And as an actor who we praise for his countless performances, he will never be forgotten, ever (like: the super hip journalist Lester Bangs in Almost Famous, the creepy priest in Doubt alongside Meryl Streep, the weirdly religious cult leader in The MasterBOOGIE NIGHTS, to name a few; I mean, that’s only a slight touch on this amazing man’s career). To a great misfortune he is also one of an increasingly alarming number of people in the world to mess with such a potent drug that literally transforms everything about your mind, body, and body’s normal regulatory operations, leaving those addicted with no choice but to keep doing this drug merely to stay alive. So when people are like, “well that’s his fault, he shouldn’t have done heroin in the first place,” OK yeah, probably not. But you know what? Addiction’s a b*tch. Just this year in Cuyahoga County (Ohio) alone 178 people have overdosed and died from this ongoing heroin phenomenon, which is the county where I’m FROM (and I’ve never even seen the drug in my entire life). Meaning: that while Hoffman is obviously different in that he was widely known for his acting, he is also no different than everyone experiencing the antagonizing pains of withdraws that just can’t be cured with popping a Tylenol; it takes serious time and isolation paired with counteracting drugs to ever get off of this inevitably evil substance. Something, that for most deeply caught in it, is seemingly unattainable (but it IS attainable!). I am heartbroken to say the least at this passing and while I don’t want to shine too much light on the drug but rather raise awareness through Hoffman’s benchmark in acting that this dark world of addiction could happen to anyone, it just sucks that it was happening to one of the best actors our generation will ever see. I’ll miss him.

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Kaitlin Duffy is a writer from Cleveland. When she's not blogging or pondering the great complexities of the world and outer space, she is finding rare vinyl steals, visiting new places, laughing often, Instagramming everything in sight, watching movies, or working on her first feature Port de Cleve.