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Parham Parastaran was the epitome of the American Dream. After fleeing Iran as a child, he had built the “perfect” life for himself: a multimillion-dollar business, his dream home, a loving wife, and three beautiful children – all while nursing a secret. Normal days at the office or home are punctuated by seven-hour showers, faked business trips, and the constant fear of discovery.


Until one morning when he wakes up to his wife’s horrified face - and realizes he is passed out face up on his bar, stark naked, surrounded by glass and traces of fine white powder.


Rehab seems like the obvious option, but Parham isn’t biting. He knows this goes deeper than the substances he is pouring into his body – fleeing Iran by train in the middle of the night, being moved again and again, and the crush of poverty. So Parham, the king of bluster and grandiosity, signs himself up for psychoanalysis. An hour alone every week in a room with a strange man, Dr. Jeckel.


This is the story of becoming reacquainted with yourself when your childhood is smeared by trauma, of being willing to open the darkest doors and look inside, and the moral imperative we all have to know ourselves.

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The Author
Parham Parastaranis an Iranian-American entrepreneur and author with a passion for discussing mental health issues in the business community. A rock-bottom moment led to signing himself up for psychoanalysis, starting a journey that opened up the darkest doors within himself and found him revisiting a childhood of trauma. Over 15 years after that first psychoanalysis session, he chronicles his powerful story in new memoir, Perfect Pain.
Parham's latest blogs
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