Five years after his death, there are still looming questions about what went wrong. There were clear mental health issues including what seems to be a severe addiction. It was ultimately drugs that took the talent from the world but what about the other people around him? What about his family? We may never know the details of what happened to the King Of Pop but this offers a chance to discuss what does impact many families: denial and avoidance kills. When we look the other way, hope for the best, stay on the pay roll and tell people what they want to hear we are all culpable for the result. Dr. Conrad Murry stood trial and was convicted, but do others have a role? I say they do. I say, families should get help long before the crisis hits. Rebound Brooklyn has a comprehensive crisis management and intervention staff. We have a strong family component to our treatment plans and skilled therapists to help the entire system. RIP all those who are a causality of systemic denial.
France’s Bean Cobain, (the daughter of Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love) knows first hand the devastation left behind by addiction and mental illness. Only a baby at the time of her father’s death, she never knew him. Suicide was the end result of his struggle with addiction and bipolar disorder. Cobain had stern words for singer Lana Del Rey, admonishing her not to romanticize early death. Rock and Roll has long had a romantic notion that death gives “street cred”. The “27-club” has become lore with the many young people who have died at that age, but one doesn’t have to be famous for this to be a problem. We see this often in the addiction treatment setting: At Rebound Brooklyn, we have many young adults who have a vaguely romantic notion about living hard and dying young. Part of this notion is ego and working through that in therapy is critical for long-term, sustainable recovery.
- Joe Schrank