Secret Summers

Statin Cure: Against Medical Advice

Editor's Note: This is Part Three of a four-part series. Part 1 and Part 2 are instrumental in understanding this article. MALIBU—My young, fit, healthy father was the strongest, most powerful man I have ever known. After joining Kaiser and getting an initial physical, he was prescribed statins and immediately suffered horrifying side effects. For two years, doctors vehemently denied the...

Cultural Secret #1: What’s My Identity?

What trials face the young Lebanese woman and strapping Irish lad who find themselves in love in the heart of Los Angeles? Born the youngest of four first-generation American children, my siblings and I shared parents with strong, independent cultural values. But in spite of our biracial heritage, my mother's Lebanese values reigned supreme in our upbringing. Cultural clash was commonplace,...

The Four Stages Of Dating Theory

BEVERLY HILLS—Of my eleven closest girlfriends, I had the fewest relationship problems. My ongoing examination of why they were continuously crushed by their short-lived relationships helped me discover my secrets of dating theory. I wasn't the hottest of my clan, but you'd think I was considering my dating success. They would attract good catches, but only for a limited time. I learned...

Pornography: Boys Are Naughty

BEVERLY HILLS—Why is it that men are ashamed of their internet movie addiction? Hint: I’m not talking about YouTube or Netflix. Why do some say the habit creates violence, rape, and even murder, yet some cannot live without it? What makes women so mad at their boyfriends for viewing it? What is it about the word pornography that makes everyone momentarily freeze? You...

Cultural Secret: Boys Are Better

BEL AIR—Freedom and opportunity led my parents to America. Once they arrived, they built an American Dream upon a foundation of their native cultural beliefs and ideals, loads of love, and a sense of liberal freedom. My mother valued the freedom she never experienced in Lebanon. And yet, she remained tied to her cultural secrets. She firmly believed the...

Second Chances For Drummer Boy

MALIBU—My daddy always said… fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me. He wasn’t big on giving second chances, although he was the most forgiving father and gave me millions of them…. Yet to others, never a second chance. I remember our biggest argument was right after my mum died. I was gutted. In 90 days,...

Suicide Is Contagious

LAUREL CANYON—My mum used to say, "If your friends jumped off a bridge, would you?" Of course, she was being facetious. Her intention was to get me to think for myself and not follow my friends’ poor choices, or more specifically, the modern American culture. People thought I copied everything Tara did. She had a tattoo on her wrist. My mum...

Deaf Not Dumb

BEL AIR—Becoming deaf as a teenager who adored music wasn't easy...I think I would have accepted blindness if given a choice. Surely, my ears were my biggest gift of life but there was one person who seemed to suffer more than me... my mother. The first year was about seeing specialists, taking tests and getting opinions... 2nd… 3rd…4th…12th from basically...

A Statin-Induced Nightmare

Editor's Note: This is Part Two of a four-part series chronicling the medical history of Hazel's father and the complications of his prescribed choleserol treatment. To properly orient yourself within the story you may read Part One Here. MALIBU—My beloved, once-healthy father was withering away. It broke my heart. I channeled my despair into determination. Fueled by a desire to...

Reversing Brain Damage… Possible!

Editor's Note: This is Part Four of a four-part series. Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 are instrumental in understanding this article. MALIBU—We were getting closer by the day to reversing brain damage in my father. Although I felt magically guided in some ways, I found myself hitting my head against the wall in others. It was months of witnessing a miraculous statin cure in...
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