“No amount of cute is worth any amount of crazy.” Yours truly
“And I’m crazy for loving you.” As sung by Patsy Cline
Crazy used to have sizzle. One need not look too far into popular culture to see and hear the connection drawn between madness and mad sexiness. Rihanna’s latest video for the techno-flavored “We Found Love” is one in a long line of songs/films attempting to capture the allure of the insane(and not a necessarily false portrayal but that’s a reflection for another day.) Meanwhile, so many people, myself included, have been drawn to the eccentric, the edgy, and the downright unstable. But is that particular thrill gone?
Real-life events have served as an antidote to the glamorization of mental instability. Columbine, Virginia Tech, Tucson, and Oslo have gone from being places of study and residence to scenes of tragedies. The perpetrators have become the faces of mental illness turned outwards in anger and violence. At the other end of the spectrum, thousands of young people like Tyler Clementi and Phoebe Prince remind us to better serve those whose pain is directed inwards in depression and suicide.
The very public breakdown of certain celebrities has also opened our eyes to the detrimental aspects of mental illness. Despite career comebacks, no one will ever forget that Mariah Carey and Britney Spears were once hospitalized for the sake of their mental health. Jokes aside, these women , like millions of non-famous people, have survived and recovered with the support of loved ones and medical treatment. The challenge of maintaining a healthy mind may be a greater reward than a renewed career.
On the personal level, I can honestly say there is nothing glamorous or sexy about crazy. If I have to spend time and money in individual sessions or support groups because of myself and/ or my relationship, then it’s time to be alone for my health and well-being. There is no cool soundtrack when all hell breaks loose in real life.
Sane may be boring but it is also safe. Those of us who have confronted mental illness and put in the work to recover will attest to that.