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Dax Shepard Has Been Living A Lie! Actor Comes Clean About Secret Relapse During ’16 Years’ Of Sobriety!

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Dax Shepard is bravely revealing his relapse — and his months of living a lie.

As you may know, a big part of the Hit & Run star’s story is his struggle with substance abuse — leading to an impressive 16 years of sobriety.

But on a very special episode of his Armchair Expert podcast on Thursday, the 45-year-old took a break from doing great celeb interviews to reveal his famous streak had come to an end as he relapsed by abusing Vicodin and Oxycontin pills. And shockingly the 16 years itself was a bit of a lie as well, as he was even high during his celebration of that milestone!

You may recall the actor has been recovering from a motorcycle accident and being taken care of by wife Kristen Bell back in August, but that was not the beginning of Dax’s latest struggle. It’s been going on a lot longer…

Related: Dax Wants His Daughters To Try Psychedelic Drugs, But Not ‘Cocaine Or Opioids’

It really all started in 2012 during his late father’s battle with cancer. Dax detailed that he had been traveling back and forth to be with his dad during treatment, and suffered a motorcycle accident while en route to the set of Parenthood. He recalled:

“Eight years into sobriety, I had not done a single shady thing. I hadn’t done anything gray… I immediately called my sponsor, and I said, ‘I’m in a ton of pain and I gotta work all day. And we have friends that have Vicodin.’ He said, ‘OK, you can take a couple Vicodin to get through the day of work, but you have to go to the doctor, and you have to get a prescription, and then you have to have Kristen dole out the prescription.’”

He followed the guidance, but not for long. After traveling without the pills because his wife, who was pregnant at the time, would not be with him to visit his dying father, Dax went without.

But when his ailing father had to take a Percocet, Dax reasoned he could join him — after all, he had a prescription for painkillers, too:

“You know, we had so little in common and so much f**king friction. But the no. 1 thing we had in common was we were both f**king addicts and we had never used anything together. And we sat there stoned and looked at the lake. And in that moment, I felt elation and I was just happy.”

But it wasn’t his medication, it wasn’t under the direction he was supposed to take it. And he admitted to his co-host he took twice as much he needed — because he didn’t want to get rid of the pain, he wanted to get high.

After Kristen surprised Dax at his dad’s hospital, he confessed to taking the drugs, and she helped him get back on track:

“That was eight years ago. I’ve now had this experience where I did that, I felt bad, but there wasn’t any fallout from it. It was like, I felt bad, I said I felt bad, and then I did just move on and it was fine. That cycle happens maybe three or four more times. I feel shady, but I don’t feel like this is a problem. I didn’t desire more when the thing was over.”

That’s very important — the cycle recurring. Dax has undergone about seven surgeries in the last few years, and each time he has been allowed to take opiates to relieve the pain, but only under strict supervision. And each time he pushed it more and more. He stashed the ones Kristen gave him at night so he could take extra the next day — again, enough to get high. And this went on for a very long time.

He had been justifying his using to himself, as addicts do — and only really noticed a few months ago he was “getting shadier and shadier” with his opioid usage — until he was just buying and using Oxycontin with no prescription at all:

“And I’ve not ever yet bought them. And then I do… For the last eight weeks maybe, I don’t know… I’m on them all day. I’m allowed to be on them at some dosage because I have a prescription. And then I’m also augmenting that. And then all the prescriptions run out and I’m now just taking 30 mil Oxys that I’ve bought whenever I decide I can do [it].”

After he was eventually confronted by his podcast co-host, Monica Padman, he began lying to her. Typical addict behavior. The Bless This Mess star confessed (below) that he believed all of his day-to-day responsibilities were being managed, so he did not think anyone had noticed. But the truth is, as he later realized, he was gaslighting Monica AND Kristen.

“And I’m lying to other people and I know I have to quit. But my tolerance is going up so quickly that I’m now in a situation where I’m taking, you know, eight 30s a day, and I know that’s an amount that’s going to result in a pretty bad withdrawal. And I start getting really scared, and I’m starting to feel really lonely. And I just have this enormous secret.”

At this point Dax knew he had a problem. He tried to fix the situation himself, making a schedule to ween off of the pills — but he couldn’t bring himself to follow through:

“I now start getting pretty visibly detox-y and withdrawal-y. And I lie and start saying I’m having an arthritis flare up.”

So instead of lowering his dosage, he just kept going — knowing he would only spiral more and more when he ran out of pills.

Related: Dax Shepard Reveals He Was Molested As A Child

It was then, just two over weeks ago, that he realized he needed to be honest. He was in the car with Monica when he knew he couldn’t lie anymore, because as he put it:

“I’m gaslighting you and I know I am. And I’m making you feel crazy and I’m making Kristen feel crazy.”

This was one of the most important differences between Dax at the beginning of sobriety and Dax as a married, 45-year-old father-of-two who had experienced years of being sober. He could not accept the fact he was gaslighting his loved ones; it was eating him up inside.

Related: Dax Shaved His Head To ‘Match’ Daughter’s ‘Specific Haircut’

So he called them both together and explained everything, while also asking for help.

But he still didn’t know what to do. His biggest fear was that by admitting he wasn’t 16 years sober — but rather just ONE DAY — his addict brain would convince himself he didn’t have anything to lose anymore and might as well go on a bender:

“My fear was that if I have one day, I’m going to drink and I’m going to do coke. I haven’t drank a beer in 16 years and I haven’t snorted a line in 16 years. And if I have one day, then I might as well f**king have what I really want and then start over. And my fear of that is if I do that, it may take me three years to get that back in the cage. And I may die.”

Dax explained his original problem was not opioid pills but rather alcohol and cocaine — two things which would mean really going over the edge:

“I just know what I’m like on those two things. And again, it’s very hard for me to know what part of this is, like, my addiction and what great stories I tell myself of reasons why I can’t just be f**king humble and say I failed. I think I have a very legitimate fear that I would drink. And also I think my addiction is smart enough to say you can’t do that or you’ll drink.”

But he went and did the thing he dreaded. He confessed. He went to an AA meeting where he told his entire story. And he was met with open arms:

“It turned into the most incredible, like, 90 minutes I’ve ever experienced, where there was just so much love and so much understanding and kindness and unconditional love. There’s probably been many others, but it’s the only experience I can remember having that was just grace, the definition of grace. And it was very emotional. It was a really, really surreal kind of experience.”

After this meet up, he finally started feeling optimistic:

“For…a long time, I’ve known intellectually that things are going to get worse. That each encounter with it had gotten more shady and more dangerous and I recognize that the next go-around would be, ‘Oh I can’t get pills. Let’s snort heroin.’ And you know, I’ve had a lot of friends that I’ve watched go through this whole cycle, and I finally have the humility to say I will not be any different. I won’t be special. I won’t be smarter. I will be exactly like everyone else.”

This big AA confession was also AFTER he recently celebrated 16 years of sobriety on September 1. In contrast to the meeting he was dreading, Dax recalled that particular meeting as being “the worst hour of my life” because he was high and being congratulated, fully knowing he was a fraud.

The TV mainstay also detailed the physical symptoms of withdrawal, which he’s still experiencing:

“I’m sweating bullets; I’m jerky; my back kills. It’s terrible. I’ve never detoxed from opiates, and I have so much compassion for these junkies who have like f**king cycled through this 20-30 times.”

Dax apologized once again toward the end of the podcast, recorded on September 21, to Padman, and also admitted that he felt bad for his wife, knowing she would be asked about this down the line in interviews:

“The other reservation I had about coming clean publicly is like ugh, Kristen doesn’t deserve for the next 6 months for every f**king interview she does to be, ‘OH Dax relapsed!’ It doesn’t feel fair to anyone. It’s not fair to anyone. I’m sorry and embarrassed I put other people in this situation.”

He was also afraid to come forward with his story publicly due to his position as a beacon of hope for other addicts, a place he does not feel he has deserved to be in lately. He worried his confession would lead listeners to lose some of that hope. Thankfully a wise friend told him honesty is what everyone needs more than anything.

Thanks to his bravery — and his fantastically supportive family and friends — Dax once again has a bright future ahead. Things are only going to get better from here on out, as he proudly stated:

“Today, I have seven days.”

We are so, so in awe of Dax for this public confession. Sending love and strength and positivity your way!

You can listen to the entire podcast — and we honestly encourage you to do so — HERE.

If you are struggling with addiction, call the Substance Abuse and Medical Health Services Administration hotline at 1-800-662-4357 for confidential help 24/7.

[Image via Dax Shepard/Instagram.]

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The Advantages of Online Casino Welcome Bonuses

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When it comes to online gambling, the industry is thriving in 2020. Although casinos are banned in many countries, people still find ways to enjoy their favorite games of chance. However, considering the level of competition on the market, it may be difficult for a beginner to find a good online platform and take advantage of all offers. In this article, you will learn the benefits of casinos’ welcome bonuses.

What Is a Sign-Up Bonus?

As we have already established, the industry is growing rapidly and companies are desperately looking for new ways to attract customers. A welcome bonus is often used by online casinos to get new leads and players in the future. However, the best casino bonuses can be easily used to the player’s advantage. Here are the main reasons you should not neglect this offer.

  1. It saves your money

Quite obvious, right? Well, this is the main reason why you should always use welcome bonuses in online gambling: it is always better to not risk your own money. It is especially true for beginners. Since they have no experience, it is fairly common for beginners to lose their initial investment and be done with gambling for good. However, if you use your welcome bonus as a way of getting the basics skills, the chances of success will rise significantly.

  1. It allows you to try several games

Another common issue beginners face is a lack of understanding of which types of games they want to try: slots, roulette, baccarat, blackjack, etc. If you use your sign-up bonus, you will be able to play several games and choose the ones you like better. Moreover, you can take advantage of a welcome bonus on several online gambling platforms. That way you will try out even more options.

  1. It will make future gambling more profitable

Besides beneficial sign-up bonuses, good online casinos usually have great loyalty programs. For instance, the company may double up to five first deposits on the platform. If you invest 100 USD, you will get 200 USD to your account. More money — more games — more chances of winning.

Although a welcome bonus is a great way of upping your gambling game, there are a few things you should pay attention to. Firstly, a good bonus does not equal a good platform. Before choosing a casino, make sure that the company is legal and trustworthy. Since there are many scams right now, it is essential if you want to save your money. Moreover, check the available deposit/withdrawal methods and their terms.

We hope that this article has shown the true power of online casinos’ welcome bonuses and how you can use them to your own advantage. Follow our tips while choosing a platform and enjoy the best gambling experience.

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3 Key Mistakes to Avoid When Playing Blackjack

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Blackjack is the most popular casino game in the world. The card game, sometimes referred to as ‘21’, accounts for an average of 31 percent of all casino table traffic – this is consistent both online and in physical casinos. For reference, the second most popular is roulette (24%) followed by poker (21%).

It’s easy to understand blackjack’s popularity. It’s a simple game to grasp and offers players a mix of luck and skill: luck in the cards that are drawn, skill over how those cards are dealt and a player’s eventual hand. Compare that to roulette, which is based entirely on luck, and poker, which has a huge skill element to it.

However, while the beauty of blackjack is in its simplicity, there are also a number of complexities to the game, and as is the case with almost anything in life, you learn more from mistakes than successes.

With that in mind, here are three key mistakes to avoid when playing blackjack that can significantly increase your chances of winning, while limiting your losses.

Choosing the Wrong Table

Before a single card is drawn, being at the wrong table – whether live or online – is the first mistake to avoid.

First of all, each blackjack table will have different minimum bet requirements so avoid choosing one that is out of your budget. For instance, if you choose a table with a $100 minimum bet and your budget is $200, you might only play two hands.

Secondly, check the payout odds on the blackjack table. These are typically 6:5 and 3:2 and will affect how much gets paid out when you hit blackjack and land other bonus wins. Where possible, choose a 3:2 table as it pays out higher.

Thirdly, choose between a virtual and a live table. This is not so much a mistake to avoid but more comes down to personal preference. Virtual tables allow players to play against an automated computer, so you can play at your own pace, while live tables are usually quicker paced as human dealers are keen to move the game along.

When to Hit and Stand

As a general rule, most blackjack players know to hit when the hand is 12 and to stand when the hand equals 17. However, there are plenty of variables to consider that could influence when to hit and stand. Getting these right can really boost your chances of beating the house, while getting it wrong could prove costly.

One key move to implement is to always hit on a soft 17 – when the two cards are an ace and a six. This means that if you draw a 10 or picture card (jack, queen, king), then you convert your hand into a hard 17. It also gives greater flexibility if you draw a smaller value card as the ace can be used as a one.

While many players adopt a strict ‘never bust’ policy, meaning they always stand when their hand equals 12 or more, this can be ill-advised as it depends almost entirely on the dealer going bust.

Instead, analyze the value of your two cards compared to the dealer’s first card and weigh up the risk factor in drawing another card before the dealer draws their second. As a strict rule, if your first two cards equal 17 or more, then stand – anything else can be hit depending on the situation.

When to Split and Double

If you are playing in a blackjack tournament, either online or live, learning when to split and double can make all the difference to your chances of success. The same also applies to individual games of blackjack.

Click here to check the best tips on blackjack tournament strategies: https://extra.betamerica.com/casino-news/blackjack-tournaments-rules-strategy-and-where-to-find-them/

Splitting is when you split two cards when dealt the same value cards, so a pair of eights for example. Doubling is when you are given the option to double your bet after being dealt your initial two cards.

While it can be tempting to split and double at every opportunity to increase your winning, doing at the right time is the key.

It is not recommended to split when:

  • You are dealt two picture cards or two 10s
  • You are dealt two 9s
  • You are dealt two 5s
  • The dealer holds a 10 or picture card

It is best to split when:

  • You are dealt two 8s
  • You are dealt two aces
  • The dealer holds a 5 or 6 (as this is the highest probability of a bust)

Similar to knowing when to hit and stand, take a brief moment to assess the dealer’s drawn card compared to your own two cards and determine whether the probabilities are in your favour.

Likewise, knowing when to double down – when not to double down – can change the complexities of your blackjack game. A simple rule to know when to double is if your two cards equal 10 and the dealer’s card is between 2-9. Additionally, if you hold an ace, you can consider a double as these have the flexibility of playing as 11 or 1. But if the dealer’s card is an ace, ignore the double.

Conclusion

Blackjack may be a simple game but there are some important strategies to keep in mind next time you head to the virtual or live table. The game itself is still rooted in luck so there are never any guarantees to long-term success. However, by keeping these three important rules in mind, you can at least avoid making avoidable mistakes.

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Top 5 Entertainment Activities for College Students

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The life of college students is sometimes too complicated. They have to face tons of homework assignments that steal their time. Many students get stressed because of continuous learning. They seem to forget how to relax. If you’re a busy student, you should remember that you’re still young and shouldn’t waste this precious life stage. You can undertake some entertainment activities sometimes. Take your friends and organize funny games to unwind and let off some pressure. We asked writing experts from a professional essay service Smart Writing Service to share their ideas and provide you with top-5 entertainment activities for college students you may like. 

Who Are You?

Students, especially freshmen, don’t know each other perfectly. They may be taken by surprise when some of them tell something quite unexpected about their hobbies, preferences, and so on. If you want to know other students better, suggest playing a game called “Who Are You”.

Form at least three teams. If there are many folks, you can form more teams. Choose a speaker of the game. It may be even one of your teachers or professors. All groups will be given topics to discuss. The speaker is supposed to announce a new topic every few minutes. You may discuss and answer the following topics:

  • What is the greatest challenge you are facing?
  • What do you like or hate most about yourself?
  • What is your greatest value in life?
  • What emotions do you express easily?
  • What is the most valuable thing in friendship?
  • Who you want to become in five years?
  • What is your major objective for next year?
  • Is there something you want to improve about yourself?
  • What motto do you try to live by?
  • Where would you like to travel?
  • If you were to study abroad, what country would that be?

Students should write their answers on index cards. The speaker should gather the answers of every student and shuffle them. Afterward, he/she redistributes them randomly to students. Each person should guess whose card he/she is holding. Play this game after you spend some time together and already know at least something about one another.

Sentence Completion

Another fun activity is “Sentence Completion.” Most people like it because it’s commonly accompanied by laughter and good mood. It’s necessary to prepare a list of sentences. Those sentences should have a beginning, but with no end. Every student should finish the sentence he/she gets. Oftentimes, students give funny answers. At times, they are quite serious, and we can learn something important about other students. Here are several sentence beginnings you may choose:

  • Before I came to college, I was interested in…
  • When I was a child, I wanted to become…
  • The best moment I remember most about high school is…
  • My favorite pet is…
  • The things I value most are…
  • Five years from now I hope to be…
  • My greatest personality trait is…
  • My favorite subject at high school was…
  • If I could change one thing in the world, it would be…
  • My greatest fear is…
  • After I graduate from college, I…

The Reception Line

You may likewise try another entertaining activity for college students. It is called “The Reception Line.” Gather all the mates eager to participate. Divide yourselves into two groups. If you form more, it won’t fit the rules of the game. Each person talks to the person in front of him/her until he/she must move. The person at the end of one line goes to the end of the other line. This method makes it possible to meet new people. Thus, students will learn more about each other. You can make shifts every next topic or set a limit. For example, the pair should discuss 5 topics and afterward move to change partners. Here are some interesting topics to discuss:

  • Where would you like to travel?
  • What motto do you try to follow?
  • What is your favorite movie?
  • What music do you like?
  • What is your favorite hobby?
  • Why did you choose this college?
  • What do you like about college life the most?

Take Sides

You can likewise suggest a game, which offers only two options. It’s called “Take Sides.” Create a list of questions with two answers. Students should obligatorily choose one of them. Afterward, you may discuss the answers. Let everyone explain his/her choices. Thus, you’ll learn more about each other, and it will bring you closer. Here are several suggestions:

  • Watermelon or banana?
  • Sweat or bitter?
  • Short trips every weekend or a journey around the world for three months?
  • Partying or hiking?
  • Listen or speak?
  • Rock or pop?
  • Morning or night?
  • Superman or Batman?
  • Robocop or Terminator?
  • Harry Potter or the Lord of the Rings?
  • Los Angeles or New York?
  • Liberal or conservative?
  • American football or ice hockey?

My Most Embarrassing Moment

You can likewise tell each other about the most embarrassing moments. It’s important to be honest and don’t imagine a story that never took place. All the participants should agree on this term. Commonly, it is a very entertaining activity. Students tell funny stories they’ve been through. It commonly makes them closer.

These activities for college students are very simple to follow. They are really entertaining. Mind that we have mentioned only 5 of them. However, you can try a hundred activities more. Use our examples to have fun and relax. They may inspire you and your friends to look for other entertaining activities.

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