I recommend checking out this post where Ozy puts more effort into summing the timeline of events around this than I would be able to (Fro tip to Ozy for this). Long story short Clarisse Thorn did an interview with Hugo and posted it over at Feministe. During the fruit basket upturn that followed it was revealed that Hugo at one point in the past tried to kill his girlfriend at the time and himself during a drug induced rage.
What I want to talk about is the importance of the "I've been there."/"I'm there now." perspective.
Enter Daisy Deadhead:
I am an alcoholic and addict, and certainly, I could tell stories like Hugo’s. And I have done some horrible things. I thought about composing a tell-all for my 30-years-sober post (Jan 22 will be 30 years), but Hugo has died for my sins. I won’t be writing that. I will be keeping my secrets. Hugo has shown me that people are not ready to forgive, regardless of what you do and what good work you have done since. They are clearly morally superior and like to blame addicts for being addicts. Self-righteousness is a lot of fun.Now my initial reaction was to go on about how I don't think Daisy would generate as much heat with a tell-all like Hugo did (which by the way Daisy I still stand by that for reasons I mentioned in that post) but nevermind that for now. There is something important in that first sentence.:
I am an alcoholic and addict, and certainly, I could tell stories like Hugo’s.This is valuable.
As a person fighting her own addiction issues Daisy can actually offer some insight into the reasoning behind Hugo's actions. Let me say that again. She is offering insight as to why he would have done such a thing, SHE IS NOT TRYING TO JUSTIFY OR DEFEND HIS ACTIONS.
She also chimes in at a post on the topic over at Alas:
For the record, I don’t simply see this as a discussion about men and women, abusers and victims, feminists and non, etc etc, but also about judging practicing-addicts by the standards of non-addicts and never-addicts. I’d like to restrict this conversation to people in recovery, but too late for that now. I just don’t think people who have never sold their asses for a couple of pills, understand what that reality is like and never will.This is all worth keeping in mind because as she points out there are things that addicts know about addiction (and what it can do to you) that those of us who have never been addicts can understand.
She knows the highs, the lows, the feelings, the pain, the sorrow, and everything in between. And not just of the addiction but of the long, possibly never-ending battle against it.
So I'll say this in closing.
Hugo: I've agreed with some of your work and I've disagreed with a lot of your work and stances on issues. The revelation of your attempted murder/suicide doesn't alter what parts of your material I agree/disagree with. But it does reveal a part of you that I didn't know existed. As someone who has never been down that road all I can say is best of luck to you fighting it.
Daisy: I now better see where you were coming from when you talking about people pouncing on Hugo about over his attempted murder/suicide. Despite not always seeing eye to eye with you I still say that a confessional from you would not alter my opinions on your stances just as they don't with Hugo (given time to cool off). However I can see how the reactions of the people who did pounce on Hugo over this attempted murder/suicide would make you not want to speak up. I'm learning all to well now that one of the best ways to fight the darkness is to let it out. Therefore I'm sorry that this event has convinced you to keep yours locked away.