Money, Fame & Depression

Alright.

I am not sure I'm totally ready to put this all into words, but I'm going to try.

And if you are thinking, "well if you aren't ready to write about it, then why are you writing about it?" You make a great point.

But I think the answer is that, first of all, now or never. And second of all, if I see one more thing that says, "It just goes to show that money/fame/success/what you see on the outside..." and how these things somehow mean people could otherwise negate their mental illness, I am going to lose my dang mind.


So here's the thing guys. Seriously, listen.

Mental illness is an illness.

And it is not about what you do for a job, or how much money you make, or what state you live in, or what gender you are, or if you are in a happy relationship, or if you are alone...it is about your brain. And when you have a mental illness your brain is sick.

Some people have sick kidneys, or livers, or hearts. Some people have sick brains.

Now. I know a lot of people have experienced some brush with mental illness in their lifetime. And I'm absolutely thankful that so many people only know about a fleeting mental debilitation, or know about mental illness because someone they know/love has lived with it.

But what that means is that those people - most people - don't have a super good idea of the permanence of mental illness...in, well, a lot of us.


So when someone is really sick, and it's not a passing case of depression or anxiety brought on by the loss of a loved one, the end of a job, or even a broken relationship (all of which are wildly valid reasons for depression or anxiety, but often treatable with some therapy and time, and not lasting more than a few months. And to be clear there are a variety of types of depression and anxiety, but like anything some are more severe than others.) - that person that's really sick, they probably can't look too far outside of their sick brain a lot the time.

And having money isn't going to change that. And having an empire isn't going to change that. And being someone that portrays a happy brand isn't going to change that.

Because their brain is sick.

To be clear, that is not a choice, just like heart disease is not a choice. And you can't just make yourself better by focusing on the good, just like you can't just make arthritis better by focusing on healthy joints.


And when your brain is sick, it reacts like any other sick organ, and has symptoms.

Your sick brain will tell you that you are alone. Your sick brain will tell you that you are out of options. Your sick brain will tell you to not eat, lay in bed, stop reaching out - the list literally goes on and on.

And your heart knows that you are not alone, and you are loved, and you do have options - but you're sick, and your brain is the one that's in control here.

So, I'm having a really hard time with, it just goes to show and there's always help because the reality is, when you are that sick - those things don't...translate

At that point what you need is treatment. And I can go on and on about the cost of treatment, and the availability of treatment, but the real trouble is the stigma.


You know, this is pretty personal, but whatever, so is like 85% of the shit I write on here. I'm on an antidepressant. And you know what's fascinating? That it is such a simple, and small part of my life, and my treatment - and yet we act like it's the most freaking taboo thing out there.

Guys, when I started telling people about my tiny lil' pill, so many people quietly were like, oh? yes? we're talking about this? 'cause same. 

And how lame is that?

Shouldn't we be able to talk about what works? And shouldn't we be talking about treatment as easily as we talk about insulin pumps, and medicine that helps cholesterol?

Because it is that valuable.

Because treatment saves lives. Literally.

And if we're sitting around scared to say the words therapy and antidepressant we are hurting people. We are stuffing them back into the box that their brain put them in that says, do nothing, talk to no one, no help is out there.

So I get it.

I get that a death like this is shocking, and unsettling. And that's not wrong.

People with suicidal depression aren't rare, and they aren't shocked. But they are sick. And they do deserve more than our misguided notion that somehow money is supposed to fix depression, and being adored is supposed to ease a broken brain.


No comments