ost people associate Drew Pinsky, aka Dr. Drew, with the ways in
which he approaches sexually explicit inquiries on his syndicated
talk show “Loveline.” However, the certified internist
and addictionologist is currently putting the spotlight on substance
On Friday, Sept. 12, Pinsky will appear at Kingsbury Hall to discuss
his latest book, Cracked: Putting Broken Lives Together Again; A
Doctor’s Story, which focuses on the connection between interpersonal
trauma and addiction. “Nearly every patient I’ve seen
has experienced some kind of neglect, abuse or abandonment that
can create feelings of abandonment,” Pinsky says.
It’s a subject with which Pinsky has accrued a great deal
of experience. When he’s not fielding on-air questions, the
doctor helps patients at his private clinical practice. As an addictionologist,
Pinsky has witnessed the patterns that surface among a wide demographic
of sufferers. He is particularly interested with the way in which
psychological factors enhance paths established by predetermined
Drew, sans wise-cracking "Loveline" co-host Adam Carolla,
will appear at Kingsbury Hall to discuss addiction, among other
is a biological disorder with a genetic basis,” Pinsky says.
However, clearly social settings influence and even reinforce certain
addictive behaviors. Pinsky is determined to root out the true causes
in order to discover adequate methods of treatment.
Pinsky began his career at the University of Southern California.
While still a medical student, a series of serendipitous events
lead to Pinsky’s involvement with a student-run radio program.
The show, which ran from 12 p.m. to 3 a.m., only required his input
for one hour. “I came in after I had finished studying,”
says Pinsky. “It wasn’t hard.”
He adopts a similar attitude toward the myriad commitments currently
filling his increasingly tight schedule. “I’m happy
right now—my work is like play,” Pinsky says. “I
just have to make sure I don’t get distracted.”
In order to ensure that all responsibilities are fulfilled, Pinsky
also relies on those willing and able to help, such as his partners
at the office. In addition to the usual hectic chaos associated
with the medical profession, reporters and college campuses frequently
request his time. Pinsky confesses that though he is more than willing
to stretch himself, he is also quick to point out how his own loved
ones are his top priority. “I spend a lot of time with my
family,” Pinsky says. Last year, he even coached football.
Yet, as he pointed out, work and play are often one and the same.
Take “Loveline,” for example. The show manages to successfully
straddle the precarious line between education and sensationalism.
Pinsky offers scientifically based advice as Adam Carolla contributes
comedic, uncouth flair. The duality of logic and entertainment is
a characteristic that helps the show stand out from more straightforward
sources of information.
Pinsky explains that the media is a tool with which one can better
reach an easily distracted audience. “This is a way to get
people to listen,” Pinsky says. Though he is quick to point
out that he does not prefer working with high school and college
students over older generations, Pinsky feels a great deal of “gratitude
that younger people are willing to listen.”
His interactions with university students have yielded several interesting
findings, mainly regarding extracurricular activities.
“If you study college-age people, particularly women, you
find that they are not happy with the social scene,” Pinsky
says. He says that general dissatisfaction stems from a culture
that encourages shallow relationships. As a general rule, most students
do not date in the traditional sense. Rather, they attend parties,
drink to meet and greet, then wake the next morning to strangers
breathing stale breath on their pillows—or worse, lying outside,
Though they are clichéd and even amusing images, on a greater
scale, the transient nature of hooking up can prove extremely detrimental.
Pinsky often asks patients what drives them to such behavior: “If
hooking up is so great, why do you always have to get loaded to
Pinsky believes communication is essential to human brain development.
“Intimate dialogue has a healthy impact on our brain.”
Physical pleasure by itself is not rarely an adequate substitute
for emotional cravings.
Pinsky will delve deeper into such issues at the live show, relying
on lectures from his book in addition to other topics and supplementary
audience interaction. It will be an opportunity for many to begin
addressing issues that might otherwise remain untouched.
Dr. Drew appears at Kingsbury Hall on Friday, Sept. 12. Tickets
are $15 for the general public, $5 for students.