“..as soon as a celebrity dies they’re the greatest thing ever”
Scrolling along my Facebook feed I run across the line posted above. Not the whole post but just this one part.. It brought up a lot of different things for me. I started to comment on the post but wanted to ponder upon it before I went straight in to defense mode. Despite what you might think I do think (a lot) before I speak or write something that may come across as rude or inappropriate. I don’t like to think of myself as one-sided (despite how my rants come across). I do like to think of all the possible points of view people may have so I can see the whole picture. Not one narrow sided view of what I think the world is based on just what I know. Everyone has their own experience in life that changes their views and opinions. It doesn’t mean that any one person is wrong or right. It’s how we accept each other’s opinions that matter. For instance, you may be a New England Patriots fan and that is a horrible stance but I accept that fact that you clearly don’t have good taste. This is just one example but the beauty is you don’t have to agree with what people have to say but the fact that they have the right to say it. We are supposed to have freedom of speech in the country after all. Anyway, back to my pondering..
Although I did not know Robin Williams personally I was saddened by his death. Also disturbed by his reasoning for doing what he did but for different reasons than you may think (more on that later). I think that the reason why people are so hurt, shocked, sad and effected by the death of any celebrity without knowing them is because they are a part of our lives. These movie stars, singers, athletes that we as a society put on a pedestal or idolize are there because in some way they have weaved their way in to our lives or memories at one point or another. In the case of Robin Williams it might be that you remember watching Mrs. Doubtfire with your parents on the couch, your dad with a bag of peanut M&M’s and mom drinking her Diet Coke. Perhaps Mork and Mindy was on when grandma was babysitting you and it takes you back to a time where you can remember sitting on her couch eating butter & corn syrup (don’t knock it until you try it, family secret recipe) sandwiches with the smell of baked beans lingering throughout the house. It’s not that the actor themselves did extraordinary things but that their characters remind us of moments in our lives that bring up memories we like to hold on to. I also think it’s sad that the creation of any other character by that celebrity is no longer possible and the finality brings some despair as well.
In the matter of suicide..Well this is a matter that hits close to home. If you have never suffered depression in its lowest form where suicide was ever an option then you will never understand the power it has over you. It does not matter how rich you are, if you have children or a family that showers you with love. It does not matter if you have a job, house, car or live on the streets. The hold that suicidal thoughts have over a person is stronger than any of that. Very few people know of the struggle that I have had with this subject myself. The details will remain with those that have had the unfortunate task of assisting me to get through those very very dark days. It’s not something that should be joked about but I think it’s ironic that the people that suffer with this tend to joke a lot. Whether it’s to deflect from their own pain or more likely a façade that’s put on so that people don’t notice or suspect how deep the pain really is. I think the latter because it’s a ploy I myself use. Making people laugh keeps them from seeing your dark side. It’s also a reminder that you never know what people are feeling on the inside so you shouldn’t make assumptions about people. People who suffer know that they are their own worst enemy and hide it well. Recently there has been an article passed around about suicide not being a selfish act (it’s a great article if you want more insight) which I happen to agree with, it’s not a selfish act. Again, if you have never dealt with it then you have no idea how dark and sinister that place is where you decide the world would be better if you just weren’t in it. How people might be sad at first but they are stronger than you and will recover, move on and live happy lives again. Trying to tell somebody with suicidal thoughts that it’s a selfish act is like a person that has never had a drop of alcohol telling an alcoholic to just stop drinking.
All this sparked from one line of a post on a social media site. I guess now you can understand why I didn’t comment. Not only would it have been this long rant but less thought out (believe it or not I did think about this rant longer than normal). This is just my view of the world based on my interactions with people throughout my life. Each molding me in to the person I am today whether it be for good or bad. Me, the somewhat withdrawn, introvert that only wears dresses or skirts, that prefers male friends over the drama of having female friends (although this somehow makes me a whore in the eyes of females that clearly don’t know me.. Which actually proves my point about women) and has a strong opinionated, jaded view of just how kind or evil people can be. While I have healed to an extent scars are always left behind of that dark time. So rest in peace Robin Williams, the pain and darkness is over. No longer will you have to put on that mask of happiness to the world when you feel so much pain and torment on the inside.