Close-kept Secrets Close-kept Secrets

One of the most tragic aspects of the death of Philip Seymour Hoffman is, to me, the loneliness of his death, the desolation he must have felt. Many of his friends expressed surprise that he had resumed his heroin habit; Hoffman kept that secret.

Everyone has secrets. Some people like to keep a bit of themselves to themselves. Others enjoy the drama of secret knowledge. But shameful secrets are different. Shameful secrets are hard to live with; they isolate us from our loved ones. On some level, we believe that others won’t love us if they know what we are really like. For an actor who portrayed human emotions so brilliantly and subtly, the enormity of the distance between his real life and the idealized version thousands of his admirers assumed much have been very painful. If only he had known how much he was valued, whatever his flaws.



About Alexis

Alexis Rankin Popik, author of Kiss Me Over the Garden Gate, is an award-winning short story writer whose work has appeared in The Berkshire Review and Potpourri Magazine. She has penned numerous articles about local history that have been published in Connecticut Explored and the University of Connecticut School of Law and The Hartford Seminary publications. A former union organizer, Popik traveled the country educating shipyard workers about health and safety and founded a labor-management health plan before turning to writing fiction full-time. She lives with her husband in New England.
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