Friday, February 1, 2008

Brit's in The Pit

I've grown tired of giggling entertainment reporters and snarky news anchors speculating on whether Britney Spears will some day be able to revive her career. At this point, we should only be speculating on whether health care professionals can keep Britney Spears from living in a dumpster or sticking her head in an oven.

The woman is obviously mentally ill...perhaps even schizophrenic. She's no longer a selfish party girl with an aversion to undergarments or a former child star with an addiction to Cosmopolitans or a neglectful mother in need of driving lessons and a 400-dollar haircut. Suddenly, "Crazy" isn't just the title of one of her hit songs.

Where are all the piggy-back stories about young people and mental illness? Why aren't we seeing parents of the college student with schizophrenia or the husband of the young mother with bipolar disease? When Brooke Shields revealed she had post-partum depression we couldn't get away from stories about average American women who secretly wanted to put their newborns in a microwave.

Is the Britney Spears' story too tragic to report honestly or is it just easier and more fun to keep her as a punchline?

I know families who have been devastated by mental illness. Watching a loved one slip away mentally while the body remains in tact is too awful for words. I feel for the Spears family and I believe much of their stupid behavior was a result of denial.

As a child I saw the movie "The Snake Pit" and lived in morbid fear that one day I, too, would go insane. Fortunately, that hasn't happened. But it seems to have happened to Britney. How sad that one of the most sorrowful stories in entertainment history and been relegated to the joke file.

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