Tag Archives: health

Just Say No to Drugs?

So I just heard that Jen McCarthy and Jim Carrey have broken up after five years.  And while I am certainly bummed that these two couldn’t work it out, it’s the reason why they broke up which I find more upsetting than anything else. 

Supposedly, Carrey is having another serious bout of depression, disappearing for days at a time, or holing himself up at his home, and not taking any calls.  Additionally, he is refusing to take any meds, despite of having a lifelong history of depression.  He has taken Prozac for short durations, but refused to be on any anti-depressant long-term,  as stated in a Larry King interview in 2008:

KING: Didn’t you suffer from depression?
CARREY: Yes, yes. I’m on a manic high right now. Can’t you tell?
KING: How did you get through that to this?
CARREY: Well, that’s another thing. You know at the risk of like opening up the whole Tom Cruise Prozac argument, you know, I don’t disagree in many ways. I think Prozac and things like that are very valuable to people for short periods of time. But I believe if you’re on them for an extended period of time, you never get to the problem. You never get to see what the problem is, because everything is just kind of OK. And so, you don’t deal. And people deal when they get desperate.
KING: So how did you do it?
CARREY: I take supplements.
KING: Vitamins?
CARREY: Yes — well, it’s not — well, it is vitamins. But it’s also certain elements of the brain like Tyrosine and hydroxytryptophan that they’re treating depression with now. It is a natural substance that’s in your brain. Instead of being a Serotonin inhibitor, which just uses the serotonin you have and Prozac and things like that — it just uses the Serotonin you have and it doesn’t allow it go back into the receptor. It metabolizes your serotonin after a while and you have to keep taking more and more to feel good. This actually creates dopamine and creates serotonin. It’s a wonderful thing. It’s amazing. I’m going to talk a lot about it in the near future.
KING: You’re going to write about it?
CARREY: Yes.

I don’t know, is it me or am I the only one who’s really getting tired of actors pretending to have medical degrees?  There’s nothing wrong with becoming an educated patient, and I believe each of us must be our own best advocate, and not solely reliant on a hierarchically organized, paternalistic medical model.  That said….um DUDE…you suffer from depression, a scientifically studied, neurologically oriented mental health disorder.  And a couple of chewable Flintstones ain’t gonna cut it. 

I also know some are going to blame his former girl Jen for his anti-drug stance, because most people believe she’s anti-vaccine when in actuality, she does believe in vaccines – just on a more delayed schedule and without unnecessary additives.  That said, she’s another one who comes off as a medical expert on the talk show circuit, and the last time I checked, you don’t get an MD from having hosted MTV. I’m just saying…

Usually, I take things that celebrities say about as seriously as I take the babblings of a toddler, but in this case, I take issue with what’s going on here.  I don’t think he doesn’t take his meds because he wants to deal with the root cause of his problems, I think Jim Carrey doesn’t take his meds because he’s uncomfortable with the stigma attached to mental illness.  Because by taking his meds – and taking them for the long-term – that means he has to put himself into the category of people who are chronically mentally ill…and I guess while it’s ok to wear your girlfriend’s thong bathing suit in front of the paparazzi, it’s not ok to have to take ‘crazy pills’ for the rest of your life.

I guess I’m taking this personally because I used to be Jim Carrey.  I too have suffered from depression on and off throughout my life, and for thirty-plus years refused to take any meds (something I wrote about here).  I get how difficult it is to accept that depression is the shadow which will haunt the corners of your house for the rest of your life.  I understand how terrifying it is to think that others think you ‘crazy’ or ‘unstable’.  I also understand that when you’re in the midst of your disorder, your normative, cognitive rationale will fail you, and while you think you’re handling your disorder just fine – without therapy, without medication – everyone around you bites their lip while watching you flaying in the ocean of your own despair.

After thirty-odd years of being so staunchly against antidepressants, you know what finally turned me around to at least giving them a try?  It was a fifteen-year-old girl. 

I was at my cousin’s bar mitzvah, and his older sister – who is beautiful and charming, smart and funny – stood in front a synagogue audience of about 500 people and talked about not only how much she loved her little brother, but how she envied him his social ease and his laissez fare attitude.  She talked about her need to take anti-depressant and anti anxiety meds, and how she wished it all came as easily for her as it did for him.  Fifteen years old. 

And I sat there in awe of her as she joked about her struggles in front of family and strangers alike.  And if it was even possible, I loved her more…which made me realize how ridiculous I had been all these years, fearing that others would judge me.  Because I certainly didn’t judge her.  In the end, by releasing my own need for control, I regain a part of myself that would have otherwise alluded me…the part that feels joy and gratitude, even in the middle of the chaos…the part that is able to distinguish real problems from distractions….the part of me others feel at ease around.

I wish that for Jim Carrey. I wish that for us all.

Enabler Spelled Another Way is Y-O-U.

Hi Ms. Mix and Bitch,

Where do I start?
 
OK, I fuckin hate my boyfriend!!! He’s an alcoholic that blames everything on me. I have asked him to stop but of course I’m the reason for his drinking. I have heard every possible excuse to justify his addiction. He is loud and the most annoying motherfucker I’ve met. I can’t stand him! I’m so exhausted and angry with this relationship. Don’t get me wrong,I’ve tried to support him and help him to quit. He just doesn’t get it or doesn’t care how much his drinking is a problem, he continues to do what he wants regardless how it affects our relationship.  I deserve better than this! Now,I’m pissed off at myself for being in this relationship so long. I’ve wasted my time here hoping things were going to change and they did for a little while. 
 
He reminds me of a leech where everything is about him, sucking all your energy, leaving you dead. What do I do with all this anger? I can’t stand to look at him.I can’t stand his presence, his voice, everything about him!!! In the meantime I have to pretend everything is fine between us and put on a happy face. What do I do, what do I do? When all I want is revenge because of everything he has put me thru. Help me!
 
 
Signed,
 
Black Heart
 
 
Dear Black Heart,
 
Wow, where do I start? 
 
You’re teeming with rage, but act like everything’s fine.  He blames you for his problems, and you just sit there and take it.  He’s a nasty, vengeful – let’s hope not a violent – alcoholic  who won’t take responsibility for his problem or his actions.  And you stay and take it with a smile.  What about this problem don’t you get? 
 
Let me spell it out for you, honey: he’s an abusive addict and you’re an enabling fool.  An enabler uses dysfunctional approaches that are intended to help but in fact perpetuate a problem.  Like smiling and acting like everything’s ok when in fact you’re screaming inside over his drinking problem.  The practical effect is that the person themselves is shielded from awareness of the harm he may do, and the need or pressure to change. It is a major environmental cause of addiction. 
 
In short, you’re part of the problem.  Leave him and tell him it’s because he won’t take responsibility for his drinking.  Maybe you don’t have a mama or a sister or even a good friend to tell you this, which is sad, but now you’ve been told.  So if you stay after you’ve read this, then you are no longer a victim, but a volunteer.  Which means you’re just as self-destructive as he is – only you don’t use a bottle to ruin yourself.
 
Be grateful I wasn’t harsher on you than this, but from the tone of your letter, I’m going to assume you’re a young girl who got in over her head (the frequent use of exclamation points gave it away).  Stay away from addicts, don’t go dancing on any poles, and get a college education. 
 
Anytime I do a mix about drunks, I always turn to the blues, country, and Southern rock – and this time, I capped it out with some Elliott Smith.  Because he transcends every genre.
10. “Hurt,” (Johnny Cash) American IV.
  
09. “Life By the Drop,” (Stevie Ray Vaughn) The Sky is Crying.
 
08.  “Get Yourself Another Fool,” (Sam Cooke) Night Beat.
 
07.  “I Cried for You,” (Billie Holiday) Lady Day: The Best of Billie Holiday.
 
06.  “Since I Fell for You,” (Nina Simone)  The Very Best of Nina Simone.
 
05.  “Closing Time,” (Tom Waits )  Closing Time.
 
04.  “Get On With Your Life,”  (The Allman Brothers Band) Seven Turns.
 
03.  “Sometimes Salvation,” (The Black Crowes) The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion.
 
02.  “Misery ‘N,” (Janis Joplin) Farewell Song.
 
01.  “Pitseleh,” (Elliott Smith) XO.
 
 
 
 

Where Ya BEEN?

So where I’ve been – it’s what you’re wondering – right?

Well, right after I wrote about my Guilty Pleasures of 2009, I got sick. Really sick. Like I should’ve been in a hospital because I was hacking up stuff not from this earth.  And it sucked because my husband really couldn’t get off of work and my mother lives too far to just get in a car and come over (funny how we regress to wanting our mommys once we’re not so fucking invincible, eh?).  So I leaned on my amazing friends – like Rhonda, Shani, and Anne – to help get my kids to and from school, and Sweet Pea and even Drama Queen pitched in and cleaned up some of their own shit for a change and got me ginger ale and tissues and kept themselves entertained.

Let me tell you something, it meant a lot. Really.  Because you know it was bad if I was too far gone to shoot my mouth off via my blog.

So, what’s been going on since then?  Well, I finally took my stubborn ass down to urgent care and got myself some antibiotics. Funny how someone like me who luvs her pills will procrastinate going to the doctor when it comes to medicine she actually needs.

Once you go Vicodin, you never go back. And Augmentin ain’t the same. But it eventually cut through the goobly goblins and had me well enough to schlep down to Carolina for Christmas. Because this Jew just loves her some Red and Green merriment. And while I was still not really right, I have been getting better everyday.

Expect me to have some catching up to do.  There have been lots of questions coming in, and I will get to them. So don’t jump off a bridge or anything ’til then, ok?

Thanks 🙂

Ms. Mix & Bitch’s Pouting Session #1: Not Home for the Holidays

So the whole Mix & Bitch gang was supposed to go to my mom and stepdad’s house in North Carolina for the Thanksgiving holiday.  And while I know plenty of you dread the idea of having to see the people unfortunately related to you, I was really looking forward to going this year.  For one thing, they built themselves quite the rustic palace – and I only say rustic because of its location, not it’s amenities.  With 10,000 square feet and air and heating systems for every wing, it’s not exactly winning any green earth awards anytime soon either.  But my mom really goes all out with the decorations and my stepdad cooks a mean bird.  And thank God my mom loves her box of wine just as much as Kathy Griffin’s mom because she gets more charming by the glass (a trait I too share).  We spend the weekend doing North Carolina mountainy thingys like fishing and hiking the trails and roasting marshmallows at the open fire pit…sigh, it’s just good country fun.

Anyway, the reason why we’re not going is because Queen Mama Bitch (she’s not a music fan at all, hence why no ‘Mix” in her title) is having some unusually bad acid reflux and thinks she’s going to die.  Or that she has a tumor growing on her gall bladder. Or maybe she’s really been having a heart attack the whole time.  In other words, she’s a fucking hypochondriac.  And I wish I could tell you this happens with aging parents, but she’s been this way since I was eight years old.  So she wants to stay down in South Florida, where the “good” doctors are and get this resolved before trekking back to the boonies of Carolina. 

I know I sound selfish. I am, btw.  And I do get it that it’s scary to have pain that doesn’t go away.  I promise you all, I am much more understanding with her on the phone.  But between you and me, the whole jumping to the worse conclusion deal has gotten way old with me.  She’s had a particularly stressful couple of weeks down in Florida (for reasons I can’t get into) and hence, her upper GI tract is inflamed.  Doesn’t take an MD to see the stress is getting to her.  I’ve really been missing her and wanted to see her…so I’m pouting via blogging. I told you all I was a spoiled brat.

The good news is that some very cool Mix & Bitch friends are hosting Thanksgiving and have invited us – there’s also going to be an after-Thanksgiving shin dig on Friday I had wanted to attend.  So that works 🙂   I just hate feeling like the third wheel for someone else’s Norman Rockwellian Thanksgiving Day parade.  I have really stank memories of Thanksgiving with my parents – either it being just the three of us barely talking to each other, or getting the pity invite from someone and feeling like I was looking at happy family functioning through the looking-glass.  I would always end up feeling lonelier than ever.

A lot of that changed once my parents split for good and my stepdad came into my mother’s life.  King Stepdad Bitch (he is also not a fan of music, hence why he shares in my mother’s title) can be a real piece of work, but for all his craziness (and trust me, he’s packaging a full load of the crazies) he brought a genuine sense of joy and – dare I say – merriment back into the holidays for me and my mom.  He’s a trip and then some, and he kinda looks like a Jewishy Santa Claus so he just screams holiday friggin’ cheer.  It’s a good time, and I’m going to miss it. So there’s that.

Top Ten Things about Being A Little Overweight Which Actually Rules

10.  I’m not stressing over that extra handful of Halloween candy I had this weekend.  It was sticky. It was sweet. And it was gooood.

09.  I order the stuff on the menu that I actually want to eat and not the grass clippings I used to.

08.  I’m aging beautifully. And I’m saving a ton of money on wrinkle cream I don’t need to buy.

07.  All the time I would be spending at the gym is now spent with friends over wine. Lots of wine.

06.  I actually eat real food. Without fat free, flavor-faked, chemical-enhanced crap. 

05.  I’m almost always in a good mood. That’s cause I’m not a cranky, half-starved bitch like your wife.

04.  I almost never hear my daughters talk about their bodies.  And when they do, they love what they see.  Some of their friends with more weight-obsessed mothers aren’t so lucky. 

03.  My husband loves to grab on and enjoy the ride. Enough said.

02.  I’ve got quite the rack now.  I haven’t seen my husband this excited since I started bringing home fresh baked bread.

01. I have discovered no matter what my size, I’m still hot, and that comes from being around long enough to know who I am.  And that’s priceless.

‘John’ny Rotten

Dear Ms. Mix & Bitch,

So I’ve got a situation I know has never been on your blog…

I’m a 20-year-old college student living in New York.  About a year ago, my parents went into bankruptcy, losing the family business that’s been in our family for four generations.  I thought I was going to have to drop out of school and move back home (to Wisconsin), but instead, and to make a long story short, I got into the escort business.  Now, I’m able to pay for my living expenses plus school no problem.  My family thinks I’m a personal assistant to a wealthy, well-connected family (in reality, the guy is one of my clients). 

Anyway, I don’t want you to lecture me on selling myself.  I know what I’m doing and while this is certainly not a lifestyle choice, I’m fine with it for now. I only have three semesters of school left and then I graduate.  It’s a means to an end.

My problem is this:  one of my clients -let’s call him ‘Adam’ – has become overly attached.  He’s actually a nice guy, funny, smart, a little controlling, but up until recently, very cool.  He’s a trust fund baby (very well known family) who’s fairly close in age to me, which is maybe why I shared with him my real name, where I’m from, my life really.

Anyway, now he wants me to quit “work”, and school and just be his girlfriend.  I told him I couldn’t do that, I need to finish school. After a couple more trys, he started getting angry, and now he’s threatening to tell my family, my school what I do for a living.  I asked him why he would threatened such a thing if he cares about me.  He says I’m ‘making him’ do it. 

What do I do? Do I have any way out of this? I haven’t told anyone about this, except you.

Signed,   The College Coquette

Dear Coquette,

Wow, you’re in way over your head…you know, it’s stories such as this one which remind me of what Chris Rock said, “If you’re daughter’s on the pole, some how, some way, you’ve MAJORLY fucked up.” But I’ll get to that in a minute…

First, let’s get you away from this guy.  Go to your escort service, and tell them the situation.  I’m sure they’ve heard this one before and can persuade him to knock it off.  If not, gather evidence of your time together – the DNA kind, the credit card/checks/evidence of payment type is preferable – and tell him if he bothers you or your family, you’re going to the press and to HIS family.  Trust me, he doesn’t want the mess and has just as much – if not more – to lose than you. If it escalates further, go to the police – which I know is the last thing you want to do, but your safety comes first.

Then, do what most girls do and TAKE OUT A FUCKING STUDENT LOAN, GET A JOB AS A WAITRESS OR SOMETHING and get out of this business for good.  It’s only three semesters, you won’t be in debt forever.  Because guess what?  Selling yourself is a big deal. I know you don’t want to hear it, but too bad.  Your body, your self-respect is worth infinitely more than what they’re paying.  Besides you’re kidding yourself if you think it’s going to be so easy to walk away.  Being a prostitute really fucks with your head about what men are like…if it hasn’t happened already, you’re going to think they’re all low-down, dirty dogs or pathetic headcases.  It’s an extremely skewed view of the world when primarily seen through our worst vices.  Plus, the money’s so good that you’ll find yourself justifying almost anything to keep it coming in.  Don’t do that to yourself. Don’t be that girl. 

Also, consider this guy – not a nice guy, btw – a warning: there are plenty of girls in your business who are never heard from again, because someone with money and power had them “taken care of.”  Trust me, that would devastate your parents much more than bankruptcy ever did. 

Whatever you decide to do, please contact the Sex Worker Outreach Project of New York City.  SWOP-NYC  has open meetings (for current/former sex workers) and are held the third Thursday of every month in the Financial District of lower Manhattan from 7-9pm. Please be punctual, respect the space, and the privacy of attendees. No one is required to out themselves as a current or former sex worker or otherwise. For the exact location, please introduce yourself by email to: swank@riseup.net

I’m sure they can help you out even better than I can.  Good luck.

10.  “Sex Type Thing,” (Stone Temple Pilots) Core.

09.  “Freak on a Leash,”  (Korn) Freak on a Leash.

08.  “Salute Your Solution,”  (The Rancoteurs) Consolers of the Lonely.

07.  “Sour Cherry,”  (The Kills) Midnight Boom.

06.  “Move Along,” (The All-American Rejects)  Move Along.

05.  “An End Has a Start,”  (Editors) An End Has a Start.

04.  “Fix You,” (Coldplay) X & Y.

03.  “Here Comes a Regular,” (The Replacements) Don’t You Know Who I Think I Was?

02.  “Tears are In Your Eyes,”  (Yo La Tengo) And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside-Out.

01.  “Another Morning,”  (The American Music Club) Love Songs for Patriots.

Ms. Mix & Bitch’s Top Three Reasons Why Roman Polanski is Really in the Hospital

So in case you haven’t heard, the sick bastard Roman Polanski was rushed from his place in Purgatory Swiss prison cell to a nearby hospital for a current condition “not of exceptional gravity.”  No other details were given at this time.

Hmm…why so vague? Such generalities leads my brain-a-wandering and I’ve come up with the following reasons:

3.  The Sound of His Victim’s Tell Tale Heart Drove Polanski Mad.

Yeah, yeah, it’s a literary reference you idiots.  I have a lil’ fantasy of Polanski sitting in his cell, and being haunted by the sound of that 13-year-old girl’s heart beating madly, wildly in his ears – making him lose his mind.  I know, I know, dare to dream…

2.  He Got a Scorching Case of Crabs from the Last Prison Key Party.

Hmm…maybe that All Things from the 70’s Cell Block party wasn’t such a good idea after all?

1.  A Fellow Prison Mate Made’em His Bitch and Roman’s Suffering the Effects of the ‘Polanski Treatment.’

Not so much fun when it’s done to you, eh dick wad? I think from now on, when someone gets fucked up the ass against their will, in addition to calling it rape, I say someone Polanski’d them good. I can only hope he’s in the hospital, with an holeful of Preparation H while he’s crying like the limp weasel he is.  You got Polanski’d, punk. You got it good.  Karma’s a vengeful bitch.

10.  “Way Down in the Hole,”  (Tom Waits)  Frank’s Wild Years.

09.  “Let the Devil In,”  (TV on the Radio) Return to Cookie Mountain.

08.  “Do Do Wap is Strong in Here,” (Curtis Mayfield) Short Eyes (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack).

07. “Welcome to the Jungle,”  (Guns N’ Roses)  Appetite for Destruction.

06. ” The Unforgiven,”  (Hal Ketchum) Awaiting Redemption.

05.  “All Apologies,”  (Nirvana)  MTV Unplugged in New York: Nirvana.

04.  “Needle in the Hay,”  (Elliott Smith)  Elliott Smith.

03.  “Pay the Devil,”  (Van Morrisson)  Pay the Devil.

02.  “Message in a Bottle,”  (The Police)  Regatta de Blanc.

01.  “B.M.F.A. (Bloody Motherfuckin’ Asshole)  (Martha Wainwright)  Martha Wainwright.  (PS: I know I use this song a lot in my mixes, but man was it perfect for this one).