Love-Addict: Trials in Online Dating
Perzine, Aleksandra McHugh & Stuart Calton, Earthly City productions, 26 pgs, $5
Transparency is Love-Addict’s biggest strength, and perhaps its most oblivious flaw. This peek into a life of online dating through the lens of someone with borderline personality disorder (BPD) has such lucidity, clear and without filter. The clarity of Love-Addict can be disturbing and illuminating, as most art sprouting from personal epiphany can be.
But is it too much? While reading this zine, I skated a fine line between wanting to put it down and keep feverishly reading. To be frank, although I praise Love-Addict’s lack of filters, it also feels chaotic at the core. Maybe that’s the point; online dating is hard, and online dating with BPD seems, from Love-Addict, an entirely different dimension. The act of rifling through past loves, kinks, and known imperfections, along with a mental health diagnosis, creates a very interesting dialogue. The material parts of the zine were excellent: sturdy paper, with nice legible print, and unique illustrations. The zine was part of a project called Bad Dates, which were captured Facebook updates by author Aleksandra McHugh (one of the co-authors of Love-Addict). The zine is a powerful chronicle of her interactions, and searches for those who can acknowledge and understand the ways love can warp and exhilarate us. It’s disconnected to read, but it has its own power, which not everyone might get on a first read. (KK Taylor)