RIP Robin Williams

Tuesday 12 Aug, 2014, 12:10pm by Mrs D 29 comments

robin williams

 

“There is this thing for alcoholics called a black out which isn’t really a black out it’s more like sleepwalking with activities.”

That quote from this interview with him on Australian TV in 2010 . He talks very candidly about  his 30-year battle with alcoholism and falling off the wagon after 20 years of sobriety (starts talking about alcoholism at 3 1/2 minutes in).

 

29 comments

  1. think learning about how depression affects the chemicals in the brains may be better described by this analogy. If you have a fully stocked fridge and pantry of food to last 2 weeks, but if you eat all that food in one day, THEN have to spend another 13 days with out. Is similar to the imbalance that bipolar, depression and addiction all have in common. The highs and the lows of all of these are worse than that though, Mania can last for months, depleting the body of nutrients and chemicals needed for well being. Then Depression its opposite kicks in. There is nothing left, you cant just “feel ok” there’s no good chemicals left for something in between. This is where addiction comes in, start using something else to get high again, making the depletion worse, and the spiral increases down and down and down. He didn’t make it. These highs and lows are extreme for some people with Bipolar (every person is unique) and as amazing and brilliant as he is when in comedic place, the depression was horrible, relentless and debilitating. Of course its the things in real life that can trigger these off too. Sad for Robin. He needed good help and good support. The issues of Bipolar are very complex. The book “An Unquiet Mind” is a good read for understanding the complexity of not just depression but the mania. Any addict on this forum (like me) understands when you give up your drug of choice, you loose the depression, (great), but you miss the highs and feeling good (hard). This is even greater cycles of ups and downs as the brain chemistry is there to begin with. At 60 years of age, the body is running on whats put in, (Im a Health Professional Massage and studying Naturopathy). our natural chemicals are depleted even more with partying, and so that makes it hard to keep well.

    0
    1. Something else I have stolen shamelessly from Jason Manford’s post on facebook today, thought it very apt

      “Mork & Mindy: In Mork We Trust (#1.21)” (1979)
      Orson: The report, Mork.
      Mork: This week I discovered a terrible disease called loneliness.
      Orson: Do many people on Earth suffer from this disease?
      Mork: Oh yes sir, and how they suffer. One man I know suffers so much he has to take a medication called bourbon, even that doesn’t help very much because then he can hear paint dry.
      Orson: Does bed rest help?
      Mork: No because I’ve heard that sleeping alone is part of the problem. You see, Orson, loneliness is a disease of the spirit. People who have it think that no one cares about them.
      Orson: Do you have any idea why?
      Mork: Yes sir you can count on me. You see, when children are young, they’re told not to talk to strangers. When they go to school, they’re told not to talk to the person next to them. Finally when they’re very old, they’re told not to talk to themselves, who’s left?
      Orson: Are you saying Earthlings make each other lonely?
      Mork: No sir I’m saying just the opposite. They make themeslves lonely, they’re so busy looking out for number one that there’s not enough room for two.
      Orson: It’s too bad everybody down there can’t get together and find a cure.
      Mork: Here’s the paradox sir because if they did get together, they wouldn’t need one.

      0
  2. So sad…

    The thing that hits me? He did 20 years – 20 years!!!! I’ve just got 10 in and had that inflation of ego that is a worry… then you hear of this… 20 years!!!!

    So I’m sad another one is taken from us by this disease, but also I have to truthfully say there is a bit of me that is euphoric that today it isn’t me that has slipped off the wagon and is facing the hideous four horsemen again

    0
    1. Yes it was the slip up after 20 years that really got to me too .
      It just shows how it won’t go away . There is no remission .
      All the more reason to celebrate your 10 year sobriety ! Awesome

      0
  3. So sad to read this. A huge loss.

    For many of us, life gets better and better in sobriety, we get to enjoy and make the most of the extra time and energy and freedom from shame or hangovers.

    But I’m one of those who found herself battling with intense anxiety and bouts of depression in sobriety after a year or two and was lucky to get a skilled therapist to help me deal with that. Self-medicating emotional distress with alcohol is never the answer but finding better ways to cope takes time and persistence. I’m lucky that I have never had clinical depression but I know many who do battle with this. For some, CBT therapies are part of the answer, for others anti-depressants or anxiolytics, for others depth psychology. Keeping a journals can help you gain insight, there are support groups and skilled listeners out there.

    The big things is to begin talking about it and share what you’re going through.

    0
  4. Fuck! This year we lose Philip Seymour Hoffman to drugs and now this…. I wonder if it was directly related to drink? I.e. was he drunk or withdrawing when it happened.

    0
  5. A great comic genius whose relapse after 20 years of sobriety is a reminder to us all not to let down or guard. On location in Alaska in 2003,he started drinking again.

    “I was in a small town where it’s not the edge of the world, but you can see it from there, and then I thought: drinking. I just thought, hey, maybe drinking will help. Because I felt alone and afraid. It was that thing of working so much, and going fuck, maybe that will help. And it was the worst thing in the world.” What did he feel like when he had his first drink? “You feel warm and kind of wonderful. And then the next thing you know, it’s a problem, and you’re isolated.”

    0
  6. A comdeic Genius, gone far to young. It goes to show that you should not judge by the cover alone, people hide a lot of things underneath.

    0
  7. Robin Williams had a good handle on life’s absurdities hence his special brand of humour.
    But and it’s a sad truth alcohol/drugs/depression is a big wall to climb.
    If you are lucky enough to reach the top I guess it is by nature a precarious perch. I assume he became too sad too tired and just let go.
    This is the hard truth people we need to be totally honest with ourselves recovery is not about how long you are sober . Sober living is about how you deal with life without alcohol and drugs .

    0
  8. I need some advice. Today is my day 10 and I am bloody proud that I’ve reached double digits! My problem is that I’ve found the first 10 days pretty good. Other than the odd boozy wasp that’s buzzed in and messed with me (which I’ve managed to swat away quite quickly) I’ve coped really well. Am feeling good. Am feeling calm. No white knuckle ride yet. Which is the scary bit. Has anyone else had a smooth start? I want to be prepared, so if others have been in the same boat then been knocked for six at day X can you let me know? I’m starting to freak myself out that it’s been too easy and it’s going to turn to custard BIG TIME.
    There’s no reason it should be easy, I’ve been a heavy daily boozer for the last 20 odd years….help!

    0
    1. DON’T GET COCKY. I have done a sober stretch 5-14 days at least 8 times this year, and the binges are getting bigger and bigger and the lows are lower and lower. I go a long time without and then just go crazy, sometimes with the intention of only one, sometimes with the intention of getting hammered. Either way, the next day “hangxiety” is worse every time. I am on another day 4 today and am using EVERY tool I have. Stay on top of it.

      0
    2. DON’T GET COCKY. I have done a sober stretch 5-14 days at least 8 times this year, and the binges are getting bigger and bigger and the lows are lower and lower. I go a long time without and then just go crazy, sometimes with the intention of only one, sometimes with the intention of getting hammered. Either way, the next day “hangxiety” is worse every time. I am on another day 4 today and am using EVERY tool I have. Stay on top of it.

      0
    3. I’m on day 23 and have been having the same concerns as you. I really haven’t struggled too much after the first couple days. I’ve gotten into inventing new mocktails, the fridge is packed with different juices and bubbly waters. And I’m enjoying having all those alcohol calories free to enjoy formerly forbidden foods-fish and chips anyone? BUT, I think it’s partly the newness and worry that once this becomes the norm I’ll get restless.

      0
    4. Congratulations! 10 days, well done. I remember telling myself I could not possibly be an alcoholic as it was too easy to stop. I was wrong. For me it was the inner voice that kicked in about the three month mark, my birthday, then Christmas. She’s a sly tart! She got very loud through the early part of the year, but she’s much quieter now, but she hasn’t disappeared. Fortunately she only bangs on during the day. The moment the clock hits 5pm – gin time – she stops. I think that’s because that’s the time I’m not doing what Ive been thinking about all day and not drinking is sooooo good. I can’t explain it logically but by not drinking I feel active in the process. Would love for her to disappear, hope she does, but I can live with her if I have to. Hope this helps. Keep going strong, being sober has given me my life back. xx

      0
    5. Plan your week so as to avoid pitfalls & temptation, eg, Friday nights are my weak point. Forever it’s been the boozer mates night out. They all meet roun one particular girl’s house, start drinking, then off to pub, etc, etc. I now plan something for fri, something which will take me beyond th witching hour & so escape the routine, for example a trip into town which will mean you get home too late to go out. An AA meeting; whereby you can linger longer & go for a coffee afterwards. Visit a friend, a cousin, a family member etc., or order a take away to be delivered smack bang in the middle of the evening to ensure it will interfere with getting ready, invite a friend along too, or organize it with a family member etc. Once you start this new regime it will reignite new habits in your life. This fri I’m planning a trip into town then collect takeaway on the way home. Love, love, my sobriety x

      0
    6. I had the same thoughts – why am I finding this so easy when so many seem to struggle – I’m Day 42 and still no sign of a struggle – but, after reading about pink clouds, I’ve decided to enjoy the enjoyment, but remain wary that The Monster might appear to try to spoil my party …..

      0
    7. In my meetings they call this “The Pink Cloud.” No hangovers, you feel good, you lose weight, it’s all exciting and new. Everyone is cheering for you. I found it is Later On when the old demons whisper “you can have just one. You’re better now.” Then it gets scary. Enjoy this time, but read up on addiction, talk to lots of sober people and fill yourself with the gifts of sobriety. It’s like putting money in the bank at first — and later, when it may get hard — you make withdrawals and count on the wisdom you gathered in the early days.

      0
    8. Wow 10 days, that is fantastic, I had a very good start, I was thrilled and proud to be getting sober. I spent a great deal of time taking care of myself in my bubble of sobriety. I started to find triggers when life’s firsts like dinner party or special occasion or shitty day or fight with partner happened. My first month was a high of being solely focused on my self care, then I had to step up and do life. My advice is celebrate your amazing 10 days. Yahooooo. And live for now, keep a toolbox handy for when you feel the “I would like/need a drink” moment. They do pass. Don’t stress the what ifs.

      0
  9. Such a heartbreaking tragedy. Robin worked hard in recovery and provided laughter to all. Heart felt condolences to his family. Depression and addiction can often be a nasty twosome for some. Thank you so much Mrs D for providing a place to support each other through both

    0
  10. Nanu nanu Mork…I grew up with you. I hope you are at peace now Robin. I know first hand where depression takes me but I am more likely to attempt suicide while drinking….

    0
Add Comment Register



Share your ideas

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>