Carrie Fisher, another celebrity death, common place, perhaps. We lost Robin Williams not that many years ago, there is a connection here. Both lived with (most people say suffered from) mental illness. Another “drug user” some might say, and yes have both of them admitted to using drugs. She came out with her illness before it became “popular” for celebrities. She also spoke about her addiction to drugs. Her autopsy results showed that that she was using them. Which is common for plenty of people who have mental illness to use them to cope with it.
Carrie Fisher got the conversation going about her mental illness and her addiction to drugs. Back when many people just hid it away from friends and family. She didn’t want those who live with it to feel shame because of it. She wanted an open conversation between those who live with it and those who don’t have mental illness. She wanted to break the stigma behind it, for there to be open discussion about it. The fact that drugs might have caused her death should not tarnish her as a person.
I found this on my personal Facebook page from a friend, and this was my response to it on her post:
“I understand, I used to think badly of all people using drugs until I got diagnosed with. I met plenty of people with drug and alcohol addictions. As I got to know them, as people, I lost that judgment, they were some really good people who were struggling with many issues and using and abusing was a way to cover up what felt. I know that not every drug abuser or alcoholic have mental illness, but a good majority are. So she did some drugs, like this stated she is a bad ass, to live with mental illness and get into movies or for the non-famous (us common folk) just getting up and go to work on a daily is too. I’m also including veterans who have fought for this country, mostly older vets and some of the ones retuning home now. The horrors that they saw and the never ending battles that they fight in their heads. Drugs is one way they cope with it as the government doesn’t do much for them. Don’t judge what you don’t understand. “
She was an influence early on when most people, not just in Hollywood, didn’t want to talk about mental illness. It was kept quiet and hardly ever bought to light. This should not diminish her part the she took into getting this to be talked about in the open about. I’m going leave you with that thought and leave you with some quotes of hers. Carrie Fisher you will always be “bad ass” not only as your role as the only big female in the original Star Wars trilogy but in what you have done in the mental health community. Rest in peace.
‘I’m mentally ill. I can say that. I am not ashamed of that. I survived that, I’m still surviving that, but being it on. Better me then you.” ~ December 2000 in an interview with Diane Sawyer.
“ One of the things that baffles me ( and there are quite a few) is how there can be so much lingering stigma with regards to mental illness, specifically bipolar disorder . In my opinion living with manic depression takes a tremendous amount of balls. Not unlike a tour of Afghanistan (though the bombs and bullets, in this case, come from inside.) At times, being bipolar can be an all-consuming challenge, requiring a lot of stamina and even more courage, so if you’re living with mental illness and functioning at all, it’s something to be proud of, not ashamed of. They should issue medals along with a steady stream of medication.” ~ From Wishful Drinking
Blog posts are written by Shore House members and staff.