People Are Blaming Ariana Grande for Mac Miller’s Death, and It’s Wrong. -Mitch

macgrande

If you don’t listen to the radio, read tabloids, or the internet, I’ll introduce Ariana Grande to you. She’s a pint sized singer who has had 10 songs chart in the top 10. She’s been nominated for several awards, and she’s only 25 years old. She got her start on a terrible Nickelodeon show, and has actually make the transition from child actor to adult singer successfully. Some of her songs are legit bops, and I’d kill for her voice and range. There are rumors that she’s a diva (sometimes deciding that she doesn’t want to walk and making her bodyguards carry her) and most of us saw the tape of her licking donuts.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s talk about why I’m blogging about her. We’re not a gossip rag, but we do cover women’s issues, and this is one of them. Arianna’s last boyfriend was a rapper named Mac Miller. I’d never heard of him before his DUI earlier this year, that happened shortly after Ariana Grande broke up with him. Apparently, they’d been together for 2 years, and he was already an admitted addict before they got together. Yikes. I think women, especially when we’re young, have that attraction to a man, and even if he’s got issues, we go for it, certain that we can change them. Spoiler alert: you can’t. Your chances of changing a man for the long haul are slim to none. For any human to change an ingrained behavior, they have to admit that their behavior is a problem and they have to want to change. Yeah, it’s possible that your new man who is a sweetheart unless he’s drunk will make an effort to quit drinking for a while, especially if you’re around, because you ask him to. However, if he doesn’t see it as that big of a problem, he’s not going to change, especially if he’s an alcoholic.

Sometimes I read celebrity gossip when my husband wants me to be cleaning the house, which he thinks I need to change. He doesn’t understand how keeping the house looking perfect at all times isn’t something I care about. I think it would be lovely if I became a person who prioritized scrubbing tile floors and attacking clutter, but it’s not something I see changing. See how that works? In my mind, it’s not that important. I’m not a hoarder living in a shithole, but nobody’s coming to take photos of my perfectly decorated, sparkling crib anytime soon.

Back on topic. So Miller gets in an accident in May for a DUI. He wrapped his car around a pole and blew twice the legal limit. Several sources claim that the biggest factor in Grande’s decision to break up with Miller was his increasing substance abuse. She was in that relationship from the ages of 23-25. She stuck it out for a lot longer than I would hope any young woman I care about did. Miller admitted in many interviews that he had substance abuse issues. He admitted that he wrote and released an entire album with songs about cocaine. Now, do I think that a breakup can  lead to an addict increasing the amount of drugs and alcohol he abuses? Absolutely! But do I think that Ariana Grande had any responsibility to stay in a shitty relationship with Miller, his drugs, and his booze? NO. I think the fuck not, and neither did she. This is the statement she released when the internet picked up their pitchforks and blamed her for his DUI.

arianastatement

Ah yes. Woman falls in love with toxic addict. She stays for a long time, supporting him and praying things would change. Surprise! He didn’t change, and eventually she bounced. He’s an adult human being with plenty of money for rehab. He chose not to go. I’m not in their relationship, but I can imagine there were plenty of talks about it. Promises to change. Ultimatums, controlling bullshit, tears, and more broken promises. If any other woman were living in that hell, I’d encourage her to get the fuck out. So, why is it that thousands and thousands of people have been tweeting at Ariana Grande that she’s a murder? That this is her fault? That she caused HIS drug and alcohol abuses? He was a grown ass man. He was a man with a terrible disease (as I believe addiction is) but ultimately we’re responsible for our choices and consequences as adults, especially if your choices hurt other people.

And there’s the rub. If you’re in a healthy serious relationship, your partner needs to be your priority. You don’t get to hurt your partner over and over again and expect them to stay. I can assure you that if I stopped managing my bipolar disorder, woke up every day and punched my husband in the face as hard as I could, then grabbed a baseball bat and hit him in the nuts with it whenever I had an opening, he’d leave me. I have a disease, but if I wasn’t treating it and I inflicted harm upon him every day because I chose not to fight it, my husband is under no obligation to stay with me and take the abuse.

Addicts can love you. Of course they can. They just can’t put you or your needs ahead of their addiction. If you let them, they’ll take your soul, they’ll take your money, they’ll crush your spirit, and then they’ll take more. I don’t think they want to hurt you, but if they’re actively using, they aren’t thinking about how their actions affect you, especially the combined effect of months or years of their bullshit. You will never be the priority in the life of the addict you love.

Why in the fuck would anyone blame a woman for getting out of a toxic relationship? Why? You can try to help a person, but if they refuse to help themselves, the abuse is going to keep on happening.

Now we live in a day and age when any nameless, faceless asshole can directly access celebrities on social media. Do they forget that there are actual human beings behind the @s and the #s? They can say things like,

“THIS IS YOUR FAULT,” “You lowkey evil,” “It’s crazy because you really did kill him,” and the most popular, “Fuck you, @arianagrande you did this.”

No, she didn’t do this. Miller did it. He abused drugs and alcohol to the point that the relationship couldn’t go on. Then he bought more drugs, he took them, and he died. It’s tragic. He was only 26 years and and had a lot of life left to live. He had friends, he had talent, and I’m sure he had a family, but addiction doesn’t care. He had a girlfriend who seems to have loved him, who said she supported him and prayed he’d get better, but she finally had enough. In her own words, she isn’t his babysitter or mother.

I don’t need to be a fan of her to say this. I say it as a human being who has addicts in her life; particularly addicts who have been enabled by others. Let me tell you: that doesn’t work either. Nothing will change until the addict wants to change. Ariana bounced right out of her relationship with Miller to a quickie engagement to Pete Davidson of SNL. I love Pete on SNL, but he’s been very vocal about his own issues with drugs in the past, so it’s possible this young lady might be in for more of the same. As someone who made shitloads of really terrible choices in her 20’s, I know some of us have to make mistakes several times before we learn our lessons.

In the meantime, blame the addiction, and yes, blame the addict. They’re still culpable. However, you cannot blame a romantic partner who has had absolutely enough of this bullshit.

-Love, light, and accountability,

Mitch

 

 

 

 

 

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Those Bastards! (1) Emotional Advertising and Big Money in Politics Screwing With Our Lives

**I anticipate several “THOSE BASTARDS” posts so I just started it as a series. Makes sense to me.**

If you’ve read any of my posts, you’ll know that I’m crazy skeptical of pharmaceutical companies and the doctors who are in cahoots with them. The side effects I’ve experienced from medications given to me in the hopes that they would alleviate some of my Lupus symptoms. I have gained 25 lbs in 3 weeks due to one drug. Another made me suffer a bipolar (literally; it’s not cool to use bipolar as a metaphor) swirl of manic periods and depression. I gained 40 more lbs on a different medication. Yet another made me need a nap after about a 2 hour period of light activity. That was a really lit class reunion, with me being Nappy Sleeperson. I have yet to find a pharmaceutical drug that does less harm that it does good, except maybe Plaquenil, which is an antimalarial drug that somehow makes your immune system weaker, from what I understand. I don’t notice anything different whether I take it or not.

The big name, expensive drugs, though, are insane. Some are over $3,000 a month, and of course doctors love to push those. I don’t know what the payoff is, but I assume it’s a lot. I have a friend who was taking a biologic that WAS working for her, and her insurance decided to stop paying for it. The same exact insurance company she had in October that paid for her medication decided not to pay for it in November. No reason given, just “nope.”

This is what happens when you allow fucking corporations to take control of our healthcare. Corporations with giant budgets lobby Congress and fund campaigns for our Senators and Representatives, and they’re then allowed to do whatever the hell they want to the American public. Those of us who are ill are totally at their mercy. That biologic helped my friend walk. It helped her work and support her family. She can’t do that now because the insurance company clearly didn’t like what it did to their bottom line, so fuck the patient, right?

The drug companies themselves are just as bad. The way that they tug at our emotions in commercials. These kind of commercials aren’t allowed in the rest of the Western World, FYI. They trust their doctors and their own research to determine which medication, if any is right for them. They think it’s totally crazy that their doctor would prescribe one medication over another because of financial benefit.) The commercials show active, healthy people, and happy dogs. Eddy

How do I know they show dogs so often on pharmaceutical commercials? Easy. This giant doofus tells me. My dog, for some reason (the big one) watches TV constantly looking for animals. As soon as he sees one, he barks at it. He’s actually broken a flat screen TV trying to get to some antelopes in a Geico commercial. Those drove him really crazy.

I keep the TV on in the background a lot when I work on paperwork or emails, so I rarely pay attention to what’s on, but I sure as hell know when an animal pops on screen, because Eddy lets me know. The amount of pharmaceutical  drug commercials that feature dogs is insane. It’s constant. They’ve done PLENTY of market research to show what attracts people. Young looking active senior citizens with their dogs seems to be a THING. The thing is, the happy feeling we apparently get from seeing the happy people and the dogs is fully meant to make you think something is wrong with you that this pill can fix. Can it? Maybe, but I’ve learned the hard way to trust no drug, trust no commercial, and be hesitant AF to trust your doctor. That laundry list of side effects at the end of the commercial is legit. They may not happen to you, but they might. If the drug really helps, then I’m all for it, but just be careful. Read the fine print in the drug insert. A lot of times these side effects sneak up on you. I know that the Effexor hell snuck up on me. I wasn’t fine one day, a raging banshee the next week, and unable to get out of bed the next. That’s not how it works. It sneaks up a little bit at a time, so you need to be your own best advocate.

Try to control your health through a super healthy lifestyle. Follow a healthy diet on the 80/20 rule. Eat lean meats, tons of vegetables, fresh fruit, and complex carbs most of the time, leaving junk food and processed food as 20% of what you eat. Exercise enough to get your heart rate up for at least 20 minutes, 4-6 times a week. If you’re a healthy person, that should keep you healthy. OF COURSE, if you’re on medication right now, don’t just stop cold turkey because eating a lot of salads works for me. Never, ever, ever do that. Evaluate your side effects and talk to your doctor. Make her listen to your concerns and take you seriously. If your doctor isn’t taking your concerns seriously, you need a new doctor, full stop.

If you’re a person who is already struggling with health, with eating issues, with chronic illness, reach out. I’d be happy to chat with you about things that work for me and what might work for you. I love to help. Just remember to not be emotionally affected by those sweet, cute doggies on the commercials.

In Selfishly Healthy Glory,

-Mitch