Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Dammit, Lindsay...

I'm not a fan. I'm certainly not any kind of celebrity hobbyist. In fact, I find the whole concept of celebrity degrading to the human spirit, a surrender of our own value to what we're seeing as someone else's higher value just because they work in some public forum. So why did a little bit of my heart break today when I saw a news item that Lindsay Lohan got picked up again, this time for both DUI and coke possession?
 
There's a great lesson I learned from a friend some time back, and maybe that's part of the reason I'm saddened by Lohan, and maybe a little angry at her too, the way you get angry at someone, even someone you don't know, for exercising their right to waste something precious. In the case of my friend, she took an extended trip way too far down into the depths of substance abuse, including alcohol, nearly lost her life, did lose her job, and almost her whole career too, with a hefty portion of humiliation thrown in for good measure. My friend is a lady of some means, and when she told me she'd tried all the well-known rehab programs, she was serious and was referring to the ones we've all read about. None, she said, did her any good. One day, years ago, she put aside the coddling feel-good centers and walked into the local AA meeting, and through their guidance and her own on-going hard work, has been clean and sober and wonderfully alive ever since. 
 
Back before he lost his show for making one too many mistakes of his own, Don Imus - himself a successfully recovering alcoholic and cocaine user - used to say that it didn't matter how long you were in recovery. You spend the rest of your life one drink away from being a drunk.
 
Earlier today I read a story in the local paper about a young man, an 18 year old honors student, who was killed over the weekend on a local highway when the car he was driving plowed into a concrete divider. The cause is still being investigated so no details are known, or at least none have been released. I realized while reading the story that the details of the accident don't even matter. If it turns out he was killed because he made some stupid mistake, well, 18 year olds make stupid mistakes. I sure did, many worse than whatever this young man might have done, if that's even what happened to him. The same is probably true for most people reading this. The biggest difference is our luck, yours and mine, held out, and his didn't. Hardly something I'd hoist myself up on a righteous pedestal for.  
 
Back to Lindsay. This is not some middle-aged booze hound, or a dumb-as-a-fox con artist (cough-cough-AnnaNicole-cough-cough). This is a 21 year old woman with a full life and brilliant career in front of her, if she lives long enough to see it. At 47 I know little enough about life now; I knew even less at 21, or 18. Among all those folks earning their livings from Lindsay Lohan, isn't there one willing to tell her the truth in terms that will get through to her?
 
I hope so. I really do.

7 comments:

rdautumnsage said...

Ahh, this is familiar territory. All too familiar.....There is a term I have come to use with my own daughter-young equals stupidity. It seems at that age we feel invincible , like we can take on the world and come out of it without a scratch. My daughter saw my own fight with alcholism, abuse. Yet she feels she is above whatever it is I am. In her youth she unwittingly feels she can do it better than her own mother. It won't effect her the same way. Either way you cut it , addiction and alcholism ride a fine line. I know all too well it doesn't take much to step over that line for one or the other to become your abuser, to taunt and humiliate you. It's no irony that most of those who are getting help are older. They rode the beast until it turned around and consummed them. Too many fall off that beast and are lost forever. I often sit and ponder how is it I'm still here........The beast consumed me and spit me out, my spirit was shriveled and wasted.......Wish we could save more of them younger, it's such a waste of life and love. I'm an example of that, I get to spend the rest of my life atoning trying to lift my head up from the shame. In doing so I hope the hell I can pull a few of those others off the beast and help them see where the ride truly does end. (Hugs) Indigo

therealslimemmy said...

she is young and i hope she realizes before it is too late, you know?
em

rdautumnsage said...

And of course I misspelled Alcoholism twice. Wouldn't you know (winks). (Hugs) Indigo

oldhousegal said...

It seems we all have our demons (mine is cheddar cheese -- the good stuff from Vermont -- and those wonderfully salty little creations called Wheat Thins -- a cruel joke since thin is definitely not what they make you!)), but some of us are lucky enough not to have unlimited cash at our disposal with which to indulge them.  Add the ignorance of youth to the mix and you have the perfect recipe for disaster.  In the end, life is a bit of a crap shoot...

gazker said...

Sometimes rehab works, other times it does not. I think that the person needs to want it to work. It just makes you wonder what other stupid thing she will do before she wants to realy recover!
Gaz

lilpriasebaybee1 said...

The werid thing about it is I love all of Lindesy's movies. I watched almost all of them. Yes I really hope that she can stay away from the drugs so she can contine to make millions, but I will also be soo very sad if anything happens to her because im not big on actors and actress but Lindesy I really like. So I pray fo rher, and sometimes im sure ppl telll her the truth but she is going to want to have to change herself. Tahnk for stopping by,
STcaey FFrom

vkmay said...

I feel for her too.  This kid has it tougher than the "average" person with an abuse problem.  I think the difference is that because of her celebrity, alot of people around her won't say anything, just because they want the party to keep rolling...at her expense.  She doesn't seem to have the support from her family, and most of her "friends" probably use her.  Hopefully she will find sobriety sometime in the near future, my heart goes out to the girl.
Last year, my husband, who has struggled with alcoholism his entire adult life, went into rehab.  Before that he was a "dry-drunk" for 14 years, no drinking, but no support from any program, specifically AA.  And when he fell back in, the disease had progressed at an astonishing pace.  Rehab was the best thing that ever happened to him in his life, and I mean that.  It was very affirming and sobering at the same time(no pun intended).  He was in the considered "higher" group, out of the basic three, the people who chose to be there because their lives were falling apart. Then you had the mandated crowd, and the state people who were called by the others, "three hots and a cot", who would sign themselves in to get exactly that and have a place to hang for 30 days.  All of this contributed to his continued sobriety.  He just celebrated his FIRST year at the age of 56, and after 30+ years of marriage, I must say he is more connected to life than he has ever been.  Only because he finally let the walls down and let the message and the people in the program in.  And like the program says, you're always just one drink away...
I hope Lindsay can find it sooner than later...thanks- Vic