Charlie Sheen May Not Be as Crazy as You Think

by francine Hardaway on March 2, 2011

Charlie Sheen LIVE on TMZ from his backyard

Image by stevegarfield via Flickr

I cannot believe I am writing a blog post about Charlie Sheen. ¬†But it’s not really about Charlie Sheen; its about the media’s fascination with him, even on stations that purport to be covering business or politics. To me, there isn’t much difference between belaboring the circumstances around Obama’s birth and belaboring Sheen’s stay at “Sober Valley Lodge.”

Like the circumstances of Obama’s birth, there’s really no “news” about Charlie Sheen, and if there is, we already know it. He got into some incident I have already forgotten, which exposed his use of alcohol and drugs, and he went into at-home rehab. During that time, hs wasn’t locked up, as most celebs are in rehab, so he made some silly statements.

I’ve known people in rehab. When they first detox, they go from being semi-comatose to being very high energy, perhaps because they are anxious as they are withdrawing from their substances. They have mood swings. They act odd. They say stuff.

We usually don’t see what their behaviors are during rehab because we’re not there. Or the people aren’t celebrities, and what they do isn’t fodder for paparazzi. Neither of those was true of Sheen’s rehab. He was publcly drunk and drugged, and then he was publicly, defiantly sober. And while he was trying to GET sober, CBS cancelled his TV show.

What an incentive to continue! If Charlie Sheen had gone into rehab working for almost any other corporation, he would have been supported, indeed lauded, and sent to an employee assistance program. I guess CBS doesn’t have one for its moneymakers.

When Sheen got fired while doing what, presumably, his bosses wanted him to do, he got angry. I would have done the same. He then began to try to tell his story.

That’s when the discussion on all the TV stations got fierce. Every time Sheen did an interview, the clips were played and analyzed. Was he still on drugs? Which ones? Does he have bi-polar discorder? Is he having a “breakdown”? Is this narcisissism? ¬†Everybody from Morning Mika to Late Night with David Lettterman has a diagnosis to offer. And the harder Sheen tries to get his story out, the more he is set upon by the voyeurs in the media, who are after using him for ratings, just as CBS did. Even his PR person quit, afraid to lose his reputation in the business by representing a guy with such big problems.

I don’t know Charlie Sheen. I am not a psychiatrist or an addiction counselor. But I’ve seen a lot of life, and Charlie Sheen just doesn’t look that abnormal to me — for a guy who is trying to get off substances. We had a hand in making him who he is, we should not be surprised by what we see, and whether at home or at a fancy rehab center or at an AA meeting, it’s not going to be easy for him to succeed. Let’s just not undermine him for our own amusement and our favorite station’s ratings.


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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Chuck Reynolds March 3, 2011 at 1:03 am

Good post Francine… I’ve always mentioned how glad I am not to be “lucky to be in hollywood”… Such a circle jerk and pony show.

Charlie Sheen has always had the hottest girls and can probably throw the best parties ever… but he’s normal like everybody else… we all have our problems and the media acts like we don’t… only Sheen does and tries to exploit it… Good for him for just being brutally honest and sticking to his guns. Most ppl would hide and hire a big PR firm to “clean it up”… Screw it… live it up and turn bad PR into good PR.

Soon he’ll have his own show on TBS with Conan anyways… CBS is old media, CBS is dead media.

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