Thursday, July 18, 2013

Charles Shaughnessy's thoughts on Cory Monteith's death

Charles Shaughnessy on Twitter  @C_Shaughnessy

"RIP Cory.  Until we treat alcoholism and other mental health problems as compassionately as we treat cancer, there will be other Corys."



#RIPCory


What are your thoughts?


By Associated Press, Published: July 16 | 


VANCOUVER, British Columbia — “Glee” actor Cory Monteith, who had struggled for years with substance abuse and once said he was lucky to be alive, died of an overdose of heroin and alcohol, the British Columbia coroner’s office said Tuesday.

“There is no evidence to suggest Mr. Monteith’s death was anything other than a most tragic accident,” the office said in a statement. He was 31 years old.

27 comments:

  1. Substance abuse and alcohol abuse are choices. Until there is zero tolerance for people who make these choices, we'll have more Cory's. Stop deifying him. He was a kid who made stupid choices and did little or nothing to solve his problems. His death was inevitable.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So I guess you knew him personally? Saying he did little or nothing to solve his problems is ridiculous unless you personally knew him and know that to be true.

      I don't see where Mr. Shaughnessy is treating Cory Monteith as a god, worshiping him or revering him as a god by his Tweet. He made a comment about how we need to treat DISEASES such as alcoholism and mental illness with the same compassion as we do cancer. You just chose to use this as a place for your vitriolic and uninformed rant without even reading what the real message was.

      It may be a choice the first time you do something, but these choices can easily become addictions. You have to treat what the underlying reasons are (mind) and treat the physical addiction (body) and you have to have someone who is wanting to get clean more than burying their problems in their addiction. It's the same thing with people who are addicted to sex, food, drugs, alcohol, whatever it is.

      We need to be more compassionate and treat addiction as the disease it is, and without the kind of ridiculous judgement you made.

      David Santos

      Delete
    2. Addiction is not a choice, using a drug (or alcohol, or caffeine, or cigarettes) is a choice, but not the choice to be addicted. I didn't CHOOSE to become an alcoholic, but I was lucky that I chose to try to overcome by addiction, get help, and take part in a journey of recovery....and you know what? It wasn't easy, it's a struggle all the time. You're entitled to your opinions, but unless you've been there, you shouldn't judge what addiction is like.-Susan Alburtus

      Delete
    3. I agree with Susan! A person may choose to drink or take drugs with no intention of becoming addicted. It happens!! I didn't CHOOSE to become addicted to pain killers, but it happened anyway. I CHOOSE to get HELP for my addiction. I CHOOSE NOT TO JUDGE SOMEONE because they stumbled or fell on their journey of life. Instead I CHOOSE to try and help them because I`ve been there. It just might turn out that you are the only support that person has. I Thank GOD every day that I have the support of family and friends to help me. So please don`t judge!

      Delete
    4. Here's some info that's explained better than I could explain it
      http://abcnews.go.com/Health/cory-monteiths-death-reminder-rehab-cure/story?id=19717777

      Delete
    5. 19th century thinking and attitude. That's what kills

      Delete
  2. I find it so sad, so terrible. I never knew of Cory Monteith, because I don't watch Glee. We need more places like the Betty Ford Clinic. We need the health community to come up with a treatment that blocks desire for substance abuse and alcohol abuse. He seemed like a nice young man, that couldn't get passed this disease. My heart goes out to his family and friends. I don't know much about these addictions, only what I hear in the media. A thought just came to me, wonder if there is any surgery that would hinder the drug and alcohol problem. Like surgery for Parkinson. But I don't suppose it would work. Thank you for posting this Charlie.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are hundreds of treatment centers in California...from high end centers to centers that cater to those who can't afford $50,000 a month. And you know what? Whether it costs $30K or $5 a month, the treatment is the same, but you only get out of it what you put into it. The vast majority of addicts/alcoholics have suffered from some sort of trauma in life, so to just take away the block the urge isn't going to do much. There is so much of the disease that is centered in the mind and that needs to be treated as well.-Susan Alburtus

      Delete
    2. That is so true Susan! It's a mental health problem not so much a physical health one!

      Delete
  3. Sad tragedy that perhaps could have been prevented if he had gotten more help or a good support system. People in the limelight also seem to be at increased risk for these types of accidental death or is it more publicity? The added stress or demands maybe? Seems folks with mental problems also try and self medicate themselves with alcohol or drugs. I am guilty myself, had a drinking problem for 6 years and do good now unless i go somewhere where there is drinking and then get tempted to have a Margarita or something. Or when i get really depressed. One thing i noticed when i go to a party is am tempted to drink a lot at once like i used to when i used to have a drinking problem and since i haven't in a long time my body is not used to it like before when i drank nearly every day so you can easily over do it. I think that could be what people do when they go back to an addiction. When they start back they kinda jump back to old habit or old ways. Once you know had a problem. You really have to make an big effort to stay away from places or people that could cause you temptation.
    Anyway i think people react to stress or pressure in different ways. And hard to tell how someone will react to stress or a tragedy etc. Mixing drugs and alcohol can produce deadly results so this is extremely dangerous. And no one knows what ones body can tolerate. Either to much sedation or if it is a stimulant it could lessen the affects of alcohol allowing the body to drink more or stay awake. Clearly we need to learn more about depression and other mental illness to combat drug use, suicide, and homicidal tendices. So we can help people and identify those at high risk such as returning war veterans.
    Sorry for another life cut short. Was a Whitney Houston fan.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's not just those in the limelight, it's every day people. I see people die from this disease all too often. Just this past week I had 2 people that I know die as a result of drug addiction. Often times, with heroin, the addict will stop using for a period of time, and when he starts again, he uses the amount that he left off with, and that's what causes the overdose. There is also the component of co-occurring disorders (addiction paired with some mental disorder such as depression, as an example).
      Good for you for recognizing you had a problem...and that is the problem, most people don't want to admit it.-Susan Alburtus

      Delete
    2. But those in the limelight seem to have some unique issues. So many of them are creative geniuses(ie:creative during their manic phase of Bipolar Disorder), and if they seek conventional treatment, the medications will blunt their artistic ability. James Cameron and Quentin Tarantino are open about their BPD, and it's easy to see their "mania" in their films. Heath Ledger told a friend that he "couldn't turn his brain off/couldn't sleep" before his overdose. They self-medicate....it quiets the demons and lets them still be creative masters of their trade. I'd suspect often the accidental overdose is just an attempt to SLEEP. Perhaps that isn't uncommon in the everyday world, it's just that it doesn't make news.

      Delete
  4. As a Substance Abuse Counselor (and a recovering alcoholic), I wish I could agree that it's that simple, but it isn't. Addiction is such a baffling disease, more of the mind than of the body. When diagnosed with a disease, most people will take a Dr's advice and seek whatever treatment necessary, but it's not the same with addiction. Until the addict is willing to accept help, be treated, and take part in their own recovery, there is no chance for him/her to recover, no matter how much compassion is shown.-Susan Alburtus

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Susan, Having been a psychiatric nurse and working with drug and alcohol abuse, I can tell you the physical aspect of the disease can be devastating. A lot of addicts don't make it through the detox phase and believe me I can understand why. Then the mental aspect is so multifaceted. There is not just one easy way of getting rehabbed. People need to look at what is involved here. How many people are willing to avoid family and friends who are enablers. And for many the stress of everyone looking at them wondering if they will fail doesn't help either. I was a fan of Cory's and my heart goes out to his family and friends. Addiction is a disease and a cure has not been found. Rehab works for some, but for many who are in the limelight, all the parties and appearances etc. as well as their performances and everyone's expectations can be so overwhelming. Who is really there for them? They don't want to disappoint anyone. Not even Cory really knew what he was trying to escape from when he took the fatal combination. He may have been just trying to chill out or get some sleep or even getting the courage to go on. Money doesn't bring happiness, but it certainly bring pressures people don't always understand. This is a loss of a talented young man who had troubles he couldn't get away from. His demons was his personal torture. May he now find the peace he couldn't find in life.

      Delete
    2. MeeMee, I'm thankful that I was able to seek help when I needed it and that in comparison to some, it was easier for me than others that I know and have worked with. I also feel that the enablers need to stop enabling the addicts, but in the case of those in the limelight, they don't need enablers in the way that an every day person would. I see a lot of clients who are financially secure, who don't work, who are scared to leave treatment because they have nothing to do with their time once they are home, and its so easy to fall back into addiction. Some clients feel that if they pay enough, they can be "cured" and that's certainly not the case either. What they often don't realize is that they need to get to the root of the problem and be willing to do work also. Addiction is such a devastating disease not just for the addict, but those those around him.-Susan Alburtus

      Delete
  5. POSTED ON FACEBOOK FROM CARL MILLER:

    Love your blog. It's always right on target.

    ReplyDelete
  6. POSTED ON FACEBOOK BY :Eve Donovan Zzyzzx

    It makes me so happy to hear you say those words Charles. It always disappoints me when I hear an actor/actress whom I'm love say or do condemning things. Although you will ALWAYS be Cpt. Shane Donovan to me I'm so very glad to hear your thoughts and views. A while ago an actor from DAYS (which I've watched 29 years) had said they were supporting Chic-Falet. I know they are more than in their right to their opinion. And I know it has nothing to do with their roll, or their performance, but it felt very personal to me. Although I realize this DAYS actor doesn't know me from Adam, it still felt as if they hate me. I've watched this person for about as long as I've watched the show (June 1984) and it felt disappointing.

    ReplyDelete
  7. It is very sad when we hear about the deaths of young people (and old) due to addiction. It is a disease that affects people in all walks of life, not only celebrities. We just know about their addictions! This disease is so much harder to treat because the person who is addicted has to want to be helped and work hard at getting well when they get that help. They have to make that choice to get well, which is not always easy and often can only be made when that person has hit bottom. Many times, it's too late! We need more research into why some become addicts and others do not. We need to help these people sooner rather than later, when they are already addicts! Easier said than done but we need to try! We need more facilities that offer the right kind of help, not just a place to stay and get pampered for a few weeks, then go right back to the old life style! So yes, I agree with Charlie that until we treat mental health problems as aggressively as physical health problems, there will be a lot more Corys!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well said Sharon, I agree with you totally!

      Delete
    2. Mental health issues aren't even considered "equal" to physical illnesses yet. There is a push for "mental health parity", because those who suffer from MI are left to fend for themselves. If a person has a physical ailment that causes disability(even if it is their own behavior that has caused the illness), insurance policies pay 80% of their salary for life, plus benefits. Mental illness gets that for TWO YEARS, based on old(false)beliefs that MI will resolve itself or that medication will "fix" things within 2 yrs. That patient is now unemployed, has no medical insurance, and no resources for getting their VERY expensive medication. So often, the illness itself(before diagnosis) has ruined their close relationships, so there is no one available or willing to help. It's exhausting to live with a person with mental illness, even if they are medicated and their 'episodes' are more manageable. I know that was a rabbit hole(not dealing directly with addiction),but still relevant.

      Delete
    3. Exactly! We have to do a better job with the mentally ill! It has to be treated equally with physical illness! Only then can progress be made!

      Delete
  8. When we see a person bleeding in the street, the ambulance is called, but often when we see a person who is suffering from mental problems in the street, the police are called....that's part of the problem.-Susan Alburtus

    ReplyDelete
  9. As someone who has never smoked, drinked, or used drugs without a doctor's prescription, I have a hard time identifying with people who become substance abusers. We don't know what causes people to become substance abusers, although there might be a genetic factor. I admire people like Susan who work with addicts and who have sought help for themselves.

    We do need to consider mental illness something that is equally important as physical illness, as there is a relationship between the mind and the body. Too often mental illness has been considered something to be ashamed of. We need to remove the stigma associated with it.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Unfortunately, we probably will never know why Cory chose to mix heroin and alcohol. Personally, I never have smoked, had a drink (with the exception of wine they snuck in for communion), or taken drugs without a physician's authorization, but I do know people who have dealt with these situations. I had to help a roommate in college deal with mental health issues, some of which led to drunken binges and drug abuse. Fortunately, she was able to get the assistance she needed from professionals and clergy.

    One former student, who had Crohn's disease, died the same way as Cory; we suspect that she couldn't handle living with the illness any more, but she didn't leave a note. You couldn't tell by looking at her that she was sick (and I only knew because she explained to me why she might need to leave class suddenly), but because of her disease she had an increased risk of depression--so a physical problem was responsible for a mental health problem. I do wonder if I could have done more to help, since I have a similar affliction, but neither I nor her husband ever considered that she would mix the deadly concoction.

    I applaud people like Susan who have recognized they have a problem and seek help--and who work with people who have problems and help them recover (or at least get better). Unfortunately, we'll hear about the Cory Monteiths of the world (who are famous) when they die, but we won't hear about the Jennifers who die the same way because they aren't famous. In both cases, lives were taken far too soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well said Karen! I to, applaud people who have had the strength to get help and now help others. I just wish there was an easy solution to these difficult problems!

      Delete
  11. I completely agree with you, Charlie, and with Sharon. In my experience as a medical practitioner, however, it is incredibly difficult to help someone who is not ready to be helped. If only one could find that key to get through. Often heartrending...

    ReplyDelete

Charles Shaughnessy on YouTube

Loading...

Followers

Charles Shaughnessy visitors

Total Pageviews