Charlie, Charlie, Charlie. What should we do with Charlie – he of “Adonis DNA” and “tiger blood”?
Nothing. It’s his bottom. Not mine. Not yours. Not Dr. Drew’s or E! Television’s. It’s Charlie’s bottom. Anyone who has watched a loved one crash knows how excruciating and embarrassing it is. As much as you would love to break the fall, you can’t.
What’s the deal with Charlie? Dr. Drew recently surmised that in addition to Charlie’s obvious addiction/alcoholism, Charlie may have a Bipolar Disorder. I have alcoholism and hypomania, also known as Bipolar Disorder II.
Florida lawmakers are considering a bill that would prohibit emergency room doctors, psychiatrists and pediatricians from asking patients if they own or have access to a gun. Doctors would face stiff fines: $10,000 for the first offense; at least $25,000 for the second offense and up to $100,000 for the third offense.
I’m not making this up. In fact, on Tuesday the Florida Senate’s Criminal Justice Association voted 4-1 in favor of the bill. The initial draft of the bill made it a felony to quiz a patient about gun ownership and included fines of $5 million.
I heard one of the saddest and most profound descriptions of rapid cycling over the weekend.
“I was afraid to be happy because I knew what happened after happy.”
Can you imagine living like that? That is what it is like when you know your illness so well – you have lived it for so very, very long – that you know when the roller coaster gets to the top it will come down, fast and hard.
I didn’t rapid cycle like that. Thank God. But I know people who do. I have seen them when they are on the way up, fast and furious. When they are down they are gone from sight. Holed up somewhere, smothered in depression.
Afraid to be happy. I can’t stop thinking about what that must feel like. Afraid to be happy.
Say a prayer for those who rapid cycle today.
Photo by Kevin McManus, available under a Creative Commons attribution license.
There are not many parties and social functions I attend that I can stand around and talk about having alcoholism and bipolar II and not have people politely excuse themselves to use the restroom, get another drink, call their kids, eat or walk the dog.
Especially in Palm Beach, where cracking one’s own finely polished and cosmetically altered reputation is verboten. Especially at a charity fundraiser at a swank restaurant in Palm Beach attended by some of the island’s most distinguished residents.
But I recently did that without anyone politely excusing themselves to use the restroom, get another drink, call their kids, eat or walk the dog. I was able to do this because Dusty and Joyce Sang decided – while at the cemetery burying their only child – that something needed to be done about early onset bipolar disorder.
It’s like this: If one person calls you a jackass, you slough it off. If two, three or sixteen people call you a jackass, it’s time to turn around and see if you’ve sprouted a tail.
That’s how it is with my mania. I am so freakin’ brilliant and beautiful when I am manic that there is no way I could be a jackass. Life is great. Life is grand. Life is so wonderful. Or, I am obsessed. I cannot stop working. I cannot stop my brain. The ideas keep coming and coming and coming.
I need to exercise. No, scratch that. I need extreme physical exertion. I am reckless. I am daring. I am going to kick your ass. I am living the X Games and dang, I feel good.
Of course, I’m sick and getting sicker when this kind of mania hits. And without a bunch of people telling me I’m out of control, I wouldn’t see myself sprouting a tail. I can think of no other disease that tells you are not sick. The sicker you get, the better you feel. It’s not like that with cancer or depression. You know you are sick when your cancer or depression worsens. No doubt about it.