Celebrities and Mental Health: My Friend’s Long Walk to Recovery

From IMI Diary

My friend was diagnosed with schizo-affective disorder. She had a history of physical and emotional abuse, which broke down her self-esteem, distorted her personality, damaged her family life, and later destroyed her social identity.

The failure of most valued romantic relationship cut her off from the rest of society, including her immediate family and friends.

She developed aggressive disorder to fend off any form of family and social relations, along with extreme identity with the concept of God as means to deliver her from negative family and social relations.

Her troubles persisted for close to 2 months, beyond which psychological distress in family was unbearable. Earliest possible search for expert help was best option for both primary and secondary sufferers.

She was admitted in a mental health facility for a week for all-round care, since her hyperactivity never allowed her to get eating time. As a consequence, her immunity weakened, shrinked thrice her original size, and skin easily pealed on a slight prick or knock.

Within a month, she returned to basic normalcy, with instruction to attend review clinic every month. She relapsed for 12 years, an equivalent to the years of silent and agonizing child abuse, which unfortunately she unfairly paid a price for.

As social and environment changed to more nurturing ones, and the return of the sense of self-control, relapses got weaker, so much that for the first time in 13 years, she completed year without relapse.

Celebrity influence on recovery and promotion of mental health

The celebrity lady was famous singer of her generation who struggled to deal with fame and make healthy decisions.

The physical resemblance with my friend was very strong. Both were at the University around the same time, and my friend followed her progress in the music career so keenly that she often defended her short-falls.

Coincidentally, the celebrated singer too had a history of failed and broken romantic relationships with a couple of married men, all of which were similar experiences to those of my friend and resorted to substance abuse to cope with depression, which only deteriorated her mental and physical health, as well as occupational, social, and economic wellbeing.

Married men offered new rays of hope for young girls to escape economic insecurity and sustain high social status, as main pathways to ‘ultimate’ happiness.

Her case became a national and regional issue. It also attracted the attention of the World Health Organization, through their national office. Her networks helped to mobilize resources along with family to attend rehab, and advanced treatment outside the country.

The interventions involved addressing physical injury due to injectable drugs and withdrawal symptoms, which lasted a period of 5 years.

While on the recovery path, she conducted seminars on substance and addiction, awareness on the dangers of drugs, campaigns for addiction -free youths.

My friend’s chievements

  1. Avoided relationships with married people as they were associated with affective and psychotic disorders.
  2. Moved on and develop constructive social relationships.
  3. Avoided negative influence of peers and distance self from them
  4. Lived exemplary life of morally upright and socially – fit behaviours.
  5. Started a new chapter of worthy life that contribute to prosperous, harmonious, and sustainable living.

Impact of the awful experience and long walk to recovery:

  1. Established system of deterence involving the vivid risk of mental, physical, socioeconomic breakdown from the low life misery, and suffering of the celebrated singer. Deterence is strengthened against repeat and initialization of the risk of drug and substance abuse of same singer or others people who struggle to deal with broken relationships.
  2. Developed norm of creating uncommitted romantic relationships to cushion her vulnerable emotional being.
  3. Developed best practices of developing networks and social relations based on advantages and positive influences they make for self improvement.
  4. Accepted old dysfunctional relationships and ended fruitless struggles to reclaim them.
  5. Became wiser and happier about life, marked the end of the cycle of relapsing, and became more open to new life and the opportunities for growth it presented to her.

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