Stephanie Wittels Wachs and the Pain and Frustration of Watching Addiction Happen

Episode 13

14th June 2021

The host of Last Day joins John Moe to talk about what the two of them have in common: brothers who struggled with addiction and are no longer alive.

Episode notes

Hi, folks. John Moe here. I knew about Stephanie Wittels Wachs for quite a while before I met her but correctly figured I’d get to know her one of these days. That’s because our stories have an awful lot of overlap. We’re both writer, we both host podcasts, I live in the Twin Cities and her company, Lemonada, is based here, and most importantly, we both lost our brothers. Lost them twice, really. First to addiction, at which they became different people. Someone in the grip of an addiction exists to get more of the substance and their personal relationships are secondary to that. From there, I lost my brother Rick to suicide, Steph lost her brother, the well-known and successful comedy writer Harris Wittels to an overdose. 

Looking back on it, I think I was nervous to read what she had written about Harris because I’d be overwhelmed.  

And yes, we finally did meet up and became instant friends. And I read what she wrote, of course, and I was comforted by the similarities and the differences. Mostly, I was comforted that in this hell of grief and loss, I was able to find someone in the same kind of hell. Someone who could say, “Man, it’s so hot!”

Listen to Last Day here or wherever podcasts are found. Get your copy of Everything is Horrible and Wonderful: A Tragicomic Memoir of Genius, Heroin, Love and Loss here or wherever books are sold. Follow Stephanie on Twitter @wittelstephanie and on Instagram @wittelstephanie.

Thank you to all our listeners who support the show as monthly members of Maximum Fun. 

Hey, remember, you’re part of Depresh Mode and we want to hear what you want to hear about. What guests and issues would you like to have covered in a future episode? Write us at depreshmode@maximumfun.org.

Help is available right away.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255, 1-800-273-TALK

Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741.

International suicide hotline numbers available here: https://www.opencounseling.com/suicide-hotlines

The Depresh Mode newsletter is available twice a week. Subscribe for free and stay up to date on the show and mental health issues. https://johnmoe.substack.com/

John’s acclaimed memoir, The Hilarious World of Depression, is available here. https://read.macmillan.com/lp/the-hilarious-world-of-depression/

Find the show on Twitter @depreshpod and Instagram @depreshpod.

John is on Twitter @johnmoe.

In this episode...

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  • Stephanie Wittels Wachs

About the show

Join host John Moe (The Hilarious World of Depression) for honest, relatable, and, yes, sometimes funny conversations about mental health. Hear from comedians, musicians, authors, actors, and other top names in entertainment and the arts about living with depression, anxiety, and many other common disorders. Find out what they’ve done to address it, what worked, and what didn’t. Depresh Mode with John Moe also features useful insights on mental health issues with experts in the field. It’s honest talk from people who have been there and know their stuff. No shame, no stigma, and maybe a few laughs.

Follow Depresh Mode on Twitter and Instagram.

Logo by Clarissa Hernandez.

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