The New York Times

Let's Open Up About Addiction and Recovery

SAN ANSELMO, Calif. — Fay Zenoff recently met a friend for dinner at a sushi restaurant in Sausalito. After they were seated, a waitress asked if they’d like wine with dinner. Her friend ordered sake. Zenoff declined. “Not for me,” she said. “I’m celebrating 10 years of sobriety this weekend.”

Because of the stigma attached to addiction, Zenoff, 50, took a risk speaking so openly. But when she and her friend finished eating, the waitress reappeared. This time she carried ice cream with a candle in it and was accompanied by fellow members of the restaurant staff. They stood beside Zenoff’s table, singing “Happy Birthday.” The evening, Zenoff recalled, was “just amazing.”

A victory, too. For 25 years, Zenoff, who began adult life with an MBA from Northwestern, was an alcoholic who dabbled in

This article originally appeared in .

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The New York Times

The New York Times4 min read
How To Travel Using An E-Bike Or Scooter
If you follow the safety precautions, an electric bike, scooter or motorbike is an easy and cheap way to tour most urban centers.
The New York Times4 min read
Blue Skies Ahead for Cheap Flights, But Read the Fine Print
More no-frills carriers as well as major airlines are offering deals on international flights. Just book ahead and be wary of ancillary fees — they can really add up.
The New York Times6 min read
Clara Schumann, Music's Unsung Renaissance Woman
Schumann is among the most celebrated names in the classical music canon — for most people conjuring the poetic and intense work of Robert Schumann, the Romantic master. But when the Schumann in question is his wife, Clara, the name should remind us