Our two and a half cents
You may well have heard a bit more than usual about Charlie Sheen in the last week. In fact, if it wasn’t for the general election last week it’s probably all we would have heard of, no matter what is going on in the middle east.
So another star has gotten a little too full of himself, thinks he is worth more than any one he works with and has a few rants about it. Making comments that are well out of order on a radio show has mushroomed into a week-long tirade that has received a lot of coverage by established news organisations and gossip/celebrity columnists alike. That’s not to mention all of the office conversation about it.
Is this news? Is this new? Is this of any interest? Well, maybe, but what is interesting and a little alarming is suddenly everyone reporting on his antics feels they have the right to diagnose his behaviour as a mental illness. There have been comments about his “manic” behaviour, or assumptions of Sheen having bi-polar disorder.
He has acknowledged to having addiction issues in the past and yes his behaviour is erratic and self-destructive but only a health professional can truly diagnose a mental illness but examining and talking to him. It is also quite alarming to witness some of these aggressive rants if you yourself, or someone you know have just been given a similar diagnosis.
Know the facts
When media stories are sensationalised such as this, they go a long way into feeding stigma around mental health, stopping people from asking for the help they need. It also adds to the myths surrounding mental illnesses. Make sure you know the facts about bi-polar disorder.
There are many ways to manage and treat a mental illness and someone suffering from one can lead a very full and happy life, particularly receiving the right help. Read supporting someone with a mental illness.
The only thing all this hullabaloo truly proves is there’s no such thing as bad press, as Sheen’s show tops the ratings on US television this week.